Iberdrola Renewables Inc., filed an application with North Carolina regulators for a 300 megawatts (MW) wind farm--a project that far surpass the size of any wind farm currently planned in the U.S. Southeast.
The wind farm is still a long way from breaking ground. The application represents the first step of many regulatory reviews
that must be completed before Iberdrola Renewables makes a final
decision on the project, which could begin construction by the end of the year, the company said.
If built, the Desert Wind Power Project--named for the flat, agricultural region in the area--would be located on approximately 20,000 acres of private land near Elizabeth City. At 300MW, the wind farm would produce enough power for 55,000 – 70,000 North Carolina homes.
“Developing our green economy is a cornerstone of my vision for North Carolina’s economic future,” Governor Bev Perdue said. “Projects such as the proposed Iberdrola Renewables’ wind farm can help us lay the foundation for North Carolina to lead the nation in clean, homegrown energy.”
Iberdrola Renewables said it has been working since 2009 to develop the wind farm with the communities, landowners, multiple state and federal agencies.
Construction would be expected to create over 400 wind jobs, payments to local landowners could approach $1 million per year for the life of the Project, and additional property tax revenue would result from the Project’s operation. Additionally, due to the Project’s small footprint, less than 2% of the agricultural land would be taken out of corn, soybean, and cotton production, the company said.
Iberdrola Renewables, Inc., a subsidiary of Spain's Iberdrola is headquartered in Portland, Ore., with more than 850 employees. It is part of the Iberdrola Renovables global group (IBR.MC), the world's leading provider of wind power with more than 12,000 MW of renewable energy installed around the world, and more than 4,600 MW of that wind power located in the U.S.