Washington state contract goes to British developer

Two days after Energy Northwest sold nearly $71 million in bonds to pay for its 48 MW Nine Mile Canyon wind project in southeast Washington (Windpower Monthly, April 2001), it awarded the construction contract to Britain's Renewable Energy Systems (RES). Energy Northwest, owner of the region's only nuclear power plant, already has in hand the permits, environmental studies and support from the local Audubon Society, and, says RES will begin construction this month and have all 37 Bonus 1.3 MW turbines turning by August 2002. The cost to the six Washington public utilities that have signed power purchase agreements with the publicly owned energy producer is $0.032-0.035/kWh, including the Renewable Energy Production Incentive. For utilities that want the power shaped and scheduled, the federal Bonneville Power Administration will utilise its vast hydroelectric system for storing excess production and making up shortfall and provide transmission scheduling services, for an additional $0.013/kW. The facility will sit atop a ridgeline in the Horse Heaven Hills just ten miles southwest of Kennewick and will be visible from the city, according to Energy Northwest.