Wind and water work for members
Associated Electric has long used low-cost, renewable hydropower to serve members' electricity needs and added its first utility-scale wind farm in 2007 -- the first wind farm in Missouri -- to complement members' resources. The cooperative contracts for 768 megawatts of wind energy. It also has signed additional long-term agreements to buy 470 MW of wind energy under development in Missouri and expected to be operational in 2020. Associated's wind energy resources will then total 1,220 MW of nameplate wind capacity.
Hydropower is longtime part of resource mix
Table Rock dam
Hydropower from federal dams in Missouri, Oklahoma and Arkansas is another major renewable resource Associated Electric uses to supply electricity to members. While hydropower is our cheapest resource, it is a limited commodity dependent on rainfall and the capacity of lakes and dams to store the water.
Co-ops pioneer wind energy in Missouri
Rural electric cooperatives have long been pioneers when it comes to bringing affordable electricity, and the quality of life it provides, to the people they serve. When it came to the frontier of wind energy in Missouri, rural electric cooperatives again helped open the way.
Today, Associated contracts for 768 MW of wind energy. It also has signed power purchase agreement for another 470 MW from two farms under development in Missouri that are planned to be operational in 2020.
A decade ago there were no utility-scale wind farms in the state. That's when Associated Electric Cooperative stepped forward and signed a long-term agreement to buy all the power from Missouri’s first utility-scale wind farms. This commitment, as well as the strong high-voltage transmission system owned by Associated Electric and its members, brought wind power to Missouri.
Associated sells and does not retain or retire all of the environmental attributes of energy generated by 768 MW of contracted wind facilities. This brings in revenue that helps keep members' electricity affordable.
Bluegrass Ridge wind farm, the first in Missouri, features 27 2.1-MW turbines and sits on 10,000 acres in Gentry County, Missouri. The contracted capacity is 50 megawatts, and the farm was declared commercially operational in 2007.
Conception wind farm features 24 2.1-MW turbines and sits on 7,000 acres in Nodaway County, Missouri. The contracted capacity is 50 megawatts. Conception was declared commercially operational in 2008.
Cow Branch wind farm features 24 2.1-megawatt turbines and sits on 7,000 acres in Atchison County, Missouri. The contracted capacity is 50 megawatts. Cow Branch was declared commercially operational in 2008.
Flat Ridge 2 wind farm features 194 1.6-megawatt turbines and sits on 66,000 acres in Barber, Harper, Kingman and Sumner counties in Kansas. The contracted capacity is 300 megawatts. Flat Ridge 2 was declared commercially operational in 2012.
Lost Creek wind farm features 100 1.5-megawatt turbines and sits on 20,000 acres in DeKalb County, Missouri. Lost Creek was declared commercially operational in 2010 at 150 MW capacity. Capacity increased to 168 MW through upgrades by Pattern Energy, which bought the wind farm in 2015.
Osage wind farm features 94 1.6-megawatt turbines and sits on 8,500 acres in Osage County, Oklahoma. The contracted capacity is 150 megawatts. Osage was declared commercially operational in 2015.
Associated announced Feb. 13, 2018, its signing of a long-term power purchase agreement with Tenaska to buy the energy from its 236-megawatt Clear Creek Energy Center project under development near Maryville in Nodaway County, northwest Missouri. Construction will begin in 2019 on 100 to 120 wind turbines of 2 to 3 MW each. Commercial operation is expected in 2020.
Enel Green Power North America Inc., the Enel Group’s US-based renewable company, announced May 16 signing of a power purchase agreement between its subsidiary White Cloud Wind Project, LLC and Associated Electric Cooperative Inc. In line with the agreement, AECI will purchase the entire output generated by the 236.5 MW White Cloud wind project, currently in development in Nodaway County, Missouri. White Cloud is expected to begin construction in the second half of 2019, with commercial operation due by the end of 2020. Read news release.