Google invests $55 million in AWEC

UNITED STATES: Google has extended its involvement in the wind industry with a $55 million investment in the Alta Wind Energy Center (AWEC) in California.

Construction is ongoing at the Alta Wind Energy Center

The 1.55GW project is being developed by Terra-Gen Power. Google’s investment will go towards building the 102MW Alta IV part of the development.

AWEC, which is located in the Mojave Desert, is set to be the largest wind project in the world. Building started in September.

Once complete, the Terra-Gen Power project will dwarf E.on's 782MW facility at Roscoe, Texas, and NextEra's 736MW Horse Hollow complex, also in Texas.

Speaking about the deal, Google director of green business operations Rick Needham said: "While Google won’t be purchasing the electricity from this project, AWEC will help California meet its ambitious renewable portfolio standard of 33 percent clean power by 2020. The whole site will boost California’s wind generation by 30 percent.

"With this deal, we’ve now invested more than $400 million in the clean energy sector. We hope AWEC’s success, with its unique deal structure and renewable energy transmission, encourages more financing and development of renewables that will usher in a new energy future."#

In April, Google announced it was investing $100 million in the 845MW Shepherds Flat wind project in Oregon.

For more on Google’s wind investment plans