Colorado Breaks Ground on Nation's Second-Largest Wind-Generating Facility

May 17, 2007

 Colorado Governor Bill Ritter at Peetz Table Wind Center groundbreaking.

Colorado Governor Bill Ritter speaks at groundbreaking for Peetz Table Wind Center.
Credit: Craig Cox, Interwest Energy Alliance

Colorado Governor Bill Ritter joined FPL Energy, Xcel Energy, local officials, and about 200 guests near Peetz, Colorado, on May 16 to break ground on what is expected to be the nation's second-largest wind generation facility. The project will be connected to the electrical grid with a 78-mile-long transmission line.

The Peetz Table Wind Energy Center will consist of 267 General Electric turbines that will generate 400 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 120,000 homes per year. The center is in the northeast corner of the state in Logan County, just a few miles south of the Nebraska border. FPL is constructing a 78-mile-long transmission line to connect the Peetz Table facility to the power grid at Xcel's Pawnee substation near Brush.

Construction of the wind center will employ a maximum of 300 to 350 workers; completion is expected by the end of this year. Once finished, the facility will employ about 20 full-time workers.

"Today we are making history," Ritter said. "This project will be the largest wind farm in the state and second-largest in the nation. It will have the longest transmission line in the world. Along with our tremendous agricultural crops, Colorado is the 11th windiest and 6th sunniest state in the nation."

Xcel will buy the power generated by the facility from FPL under a long-term contract. The purchase from this project and three others will allow the Xcel to comply with Colorado's renewable energy portfolio standard 7 years early. That standard requires investor-owned utilities, such as Xcel, to obtain 20 percent of their power from renewable energy by 2020.

Xcel Energy serves 3.3 million electricity customers and 1.8 million natural gas customers in Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, and Wisconsin. FPL Energy is a subsidiary of FPL Group, Inc., and is a provider of natural gas and wind, solar, hydroelectric, and nuclear power in more than 20 states.

For more information, see the governor's May 16 press release.

To read more information about renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in Colorado, see: