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Uncertain dates: Northern States Power tenders

A decision expected in January 2000 may finally come to pass in April when Northern States Power says it will announce the winning bids for developing 1200 MW of new power plant using any source of energy. A separate request for proposals (RFP) for the remaining 130 MW of a state mandated 425 MW of wind power is pending. NSP announced a short list of winning bids for the all source bid in December (Windpower Monthly, January 2000) that included two wind developers -- Enron Wind and Northern Alternative Energy of Minneapolis -- along with five other bidders. NSP says the delay in announcing winners will not affect the timing of the new development, which is to be on-line between 2003 and 2005. The release date for the mandated wind energy RFP has been pending nearly as long as the all-source bid decision, but NSP says the two schedules are not related. Renewables advocates, such as the Izaak Walton League, fear wind development chosen in the all-source bid could be used to offset the state wind mandate. But there is no indication from NSP that this is the case. The utility expects to release the wind RFP soon, but declines to offer a date.

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