Taking a chance on reinstatement of the PTC before the end of this year, Invenergy Wind LLC broke ground last month on its Buffalo Mountain Wind Energy Center in Tennessee. The 27 MW wind plant development is only the second to go ahead since the PTC expired at the end of last year. The other is a single 1.8 MW Vestas turbine by Illinois Rural Electric Cooperative, to be completed by spring 2005. A signed 20-year power purchase agreement with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), the federal power marketing agency in the southeast US, along with experience in power plant development and confidence that the PTC will be back by the time the project is completed in December, spurred Invenergy to obtain financing and break ground in June, says the company's Bryan Schueler. "We think we can push forward and complete construction of this project, even without the PTC in place," Schueler says. The 15 Vestas 1.8 MW turbines will stand alongside three Vestas 660 kW turbines already on Buffalo Mountain. All the output will go to serve TVA's Green Switch program, which offers green power to the federal agency's 185 public utility distribution customers. Chicago-based Invenergy was founded in 2001 and has more than 2500 MW of wind projects under development.
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Senior Renewable Energy Analyst (WindGEMINI Product Lead) DNV GL Bristol (City Centre), City of Bristol