We are harnessing some of the best wind resources in the country to deliver clean, low-cost renewable energy to our customers in the Upper Midwest. Today wind energy supplies 15 percent of our power in the region, and under our current plans, we expect this will double to more than 30 percent in 2022.
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Today's wind turbines are larger, quieter and more efficient. Learn more.
We have announced specific plans to grow our Upper Midwest wind portfolio by 70 percent. We proposed eight new wind farms that will add 1,850 megawatts of new wind capacity to our system, enough clean energy to power nearly one million homes annually.
The projects are an excellent value for customers. By taking advantage of low wind prices and available tax credits, we expect the cost to build the projects will be more than offset by billions of dollars in future fuel savings over the lives of the projects.
Of these projects, we plan to own and operate 1,450 megawatts of the new wind energy.
Learn more about our wind plans
We currently manage more than 2,600 megawatts of wind generation in the region or enough clean wind capacity to power about 1.3 million average-size homes for a year. Most of our wind power is purchased from independent suppliers under long-term contracts. Altogether we have about 70 of these agreements in place, with wind farms ranging in size from one to two turbines, to hundreds of turbines.
Courtenay is our newest wind farm and is significant in that it is the first project we have built from the ground up. It was completed in 2016 and took just 15 months to build.
According to the American Wind Energy Association, Xcel Energy continues to be the nation’s No. 1 utility wind energy provider for more than a decade. As our wind portfolio grows, we continue to improve system operations through advanced wind forecasting and process changes. Our efforts are helping achieve new system records. In November 2016, wind power in the Upper Midwest supplied more than 48 percent of our customers’ energy for an entire day.
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