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Developers combine efforts to build projects in Pennsylvania

Two developers are combining efforts for the third time in Pennsylvania. Meyersdale Wind Power, a partnership of Texas-based Zilkha Renewable Energy and Virginia's Atlantic Renewable Energy will build the 30 MW Meyersdale wind project in Somerset County. The entire output of the project for 20 years will go to FirstEnergy Solutions, the unregulated arm of Ohio-based FirstEnergy Corp, a holding company for seven utilities that has electricity customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. FirstEnergy Solutions plans to sell the project's output into unregulated retail markets in all three states. This is the third collaboration in Somerset County by the two developers. They completed both the 15 MW Mill Run and 9 MW Somerset projects in 2001 using GE Wind Energy 1.5 MW turbines. Turbines of the same size will be used for Meyersdale, but the supplier has yet to be chosen, says Zilkha's Michael Skelly. Nonetheless, the developers expect to begin construction this month and have the project energised by the end of the year, says Ellen Raines at FirstEnergy. There are still some development issues to be solved, such as gaining access to the last piece of land, says Skelly, which could push the project's completion back to early 2004.

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