IRVINE, Calif., March 16, 2009 – Edison Mission Group (EMG), a subsidiary of Edison International (NYSE:EIX), and Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) announced that EMG’s Elkhorn Ridge wind project near Bloomfield, Neb., is now providing electricity to NPPD. The project is majority-owned by EMG, with one-third owned by Nebraska employee-owners of Tenaska, a privately held energy company headquartered in Omaha.
The largest wind energy facility in the state, Elkhorn Ridge can generate up to 80 megawatts (MW) of power, enough energy on an annual basis to meet the needs of approximately 25,000 homes. The project is powered by 27 wind turbines, each capable of generating nearly 3 megawatts of electricity at full capacity. All of the output is sold to NPPD under a long-term power purchase agreement.
With this project, EMG’s nationwide wind generation portfolio has surpassed 1,000 megawatts of installed capacity at 23 projects in nine states. The company currently has two other wind projects under construction in Texas and New Mexico; has completed pre-construction work for its largest wind project to date, a 240MW facility in Illinois, and has approximately 5,000 MW of potential, additional projects in its development pipeline.
“Elkhorn Ridge marks an important milestone both for our wind development efforts and for providing the residents and businesses of Nebraska with clean, renewable energy,” said Ron Litzinger, chief executive officer of EMG.
“This is another major step forward in NPPD’s strategic goal of having 10 percent of our energy mix by 2020 coming from renewable energy sources,” said Ron Asche, President and CEO of Nebraska Public Power District. NPPD will retain half of the electrical output, or 40 MWs, from Elkhorn Ridge and will resell the other 40 MWs to Omaha Public Power District, the Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska, Lincoln Electric System and Grand Island Utilities.
Gov. Dave Heineman attended groundbreaking ceremonies last spring for the facility, which is the first wind project developed under Nebraska’s Community-Based Energy Development (C-BED) legislation. C-BED provides benefits to rural communities through investment in development and construction, jobs, property taxes, annual lease payments, revenues paid to Nebraska owners of the project, and diversity of fuel sources for Nebraskans. C-BED requires that one-third of project revenues be returned to qualified Nebraska owners.
“This C-Bed bill is all about economic development here in rural Nebraska,” said state Sen. M.L. “Cap” Dierks, who introduced and worked to see the bill become a law and also attended the groundbreaking event. “It’s a win-win situation for everyone, farmers, ranchers and residents.” Dierks said Nebraska needs to live up to its ranking as the state with the sixth-highest potential for wind energy. Rural Nebraska is dealing with dwindling population and there is no better place than Knox County to bring the prospect of sound economic development.
The $140 million project was permitted and developed for EMG by Midwest Wind Energy of Chicago. In its first five years of operation the project is estimated to provide over $7 million in local taxes and lease payments to landowners.
Edison Mission Group (EMG) is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and manages the competitive power generation business of Edison International, an electric power generator and distributor, and an investor in infrastructure and renewable energy projects.
Always there when you need us, NPPD’s mission is to safely generate and deliver low-cost reliable energy and provide outstanding customer service. Working in partnership with the state’s rural public power districts, cooperatives and municipalities, NPPD helps serve an estimated 1 million Nebraskans with retail or wholesale electric power and energy-related products and services. For more information about NPPD visit www.nppd.com.
Tenaska, an independent energy company based in Omaha, Neb., develops, constructs, owns and operates electric generation and co-generation plants. The company also markets natural gas, biofuels and electric power, and is a leading provider of scheduling, marketing and asset management services to wind facilities, including nearly 3,000 megawatts or about one-third of total wind capacity in Texas. Tenaska is also involved in asset acquisition, fuel supply, natural gas exploration, production and transportation systems, and electric transmission development. For more information about Tenaska, visit www.tenaska.com.
Jeanne Schieffer (402) 563-5990
Nebraska Public Power District
Susan Olavarria, (312) 583-6125
Edison Mission Group