Xcel Energy Nears Completion of Wind Plan for Upper Midwest

Xcel Energy, the number one utility wind energy provider in the nation for twelve years running, added more renewable energy to its Upper Midwest system with the Odell Wind Farm coming on line this month. The power generated will be used by customers in Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

The Odell Wind Farm has 100 wind turbines spanning four southern Minnesota communities, including Cottonwood, Jackson, Martin and Watonwan counties. It will generate 200 megawatts of electricity, delivering enough energy to power 105,000 homes in the Upper Midwest. The clean energy produced at Odell Wind Farm is expected to help avoid an average 368,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
“Adding Odell Wind Farm to our growing renewable energy fleet is one of many ways we’re giving customers the clean energy options they want,” said Chris Clark, president, Xcel Energy-Minnesota. “This wind purchase is another significant step forward in our goal to deliver 35 percent renewable energy to our Upper Midwest customers by 2030.”

“Sustainable growth and operation of our fleet of renewable generation facilities are key ingredients in the value we deliver to our shareholders,” commented Ian Robertson, the Chief Executive Officer of Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. “The Odell facility’s strong wind resources and long-term power supply agreement with Xcel make it an excellent addition to our portfolio of operating facilities.”

The Odell Wind Farm is part of a commitment Xcel Energy made in 2013 to expand its wind capacity by 42 percent by adding 750 megawatts of cost-effective, clean wind energy into the Upper Midwest by the end of 2016. Also part of this commitment, the Border Winds and Pleasant Valley wind farms came on line in late 2015, adding 350 megawatts to the system. The Courtenay Wind Farm in North Dakota will add another 200 megawatts when it is complete at the end of 2016.  Algonquin Power & Utilities Corporation owns the Odell Wind Farm, a project initially developed by Geronimo Energy. Under a 20 year power purchase agreement, Xcel Energy will purchase power from the Odell project.

MGE’S Community Energy Workshop Advances Energy 2030 Framework

Madison Gas and Electric has hosted its Community Energy Workshop at Monona Terrace where about 200 community leaders and members, representing a diverse cross section of the community, discussed issues related to our energy future. Participants generated input to help inform the company as MGE advances its Energy 2030 framework and future engagement efforts.

• Interactive workshop part of multistep engagement process started last year.
• Featured deliberative dialogue among diverse cross section of about 200 community leaders and members.
• Followed nearly 100 Community Energy Conversations with customers.
• Designed to inform MGE as company advances Energy 2030 framework and community engagement.
• Workshop videos, summary of themes at mge.com for customers to review.

MGE’s independent facilitator for its Community Energy Conversations, Justice and Sustainability Associates (JSA), designed the Community Energy Workshop. JSA’s CEO, Don Edwards, facilitated the Workshop. The topics discussed by participants included advancing MGE’s Energy 2030 framework in a changing energy world, new energy products and services, and community engagement. The videos presented at the Workshop have been posted at mge.com. Visitors will also find a summary of themes generated by the input from Workshop participants. Visit our Community Energy Workshop web page for videos and the summary of themes. Anyone may submit feedback to MGE by email. The input from the Workshop will inform further MGE’s efforts to advance its Energy 2030 framework and build a community energy company for the future.

Xcel Energy Announces Solar Connect Community

Xcel Energy has announced it is moving forward with development of Wisconsin’s largest community solar garden program.  As part of Solar* Connect Community, Xcel Energy will purchase the electricity produced by two, one-megawatt solar gardens. One will be built in the city of Eau Claire and the other in La Crosse County. The solar gardens will be constructed by Pristine Sun, a San Francisco-based leading developer of solar projects.

The City of Eau Claire has signed a lease with Pristine Sun to build the Eau Claire solar array on 7½ acres of an abandoned landfill near the company’s Wisconsin headquarters on West Hamilton Avenue in the Sky Park Industrial Park. The Sky Park landfill operated as a municipal waste facility from 1948 to 1965. With community solar programs, customers share in the benefits of solar energy without the need to install solar panels on their own roof or maintain their own solar array. Through Solar* Connect Community, customers choose their own subscription level, pay a one-time fee to subscribe and receive a monthly credit on their electric bill based on their portion of the solar energy produced.

In addition to the solar garden in Eau Claire, Pristine Sun will construct a similar sized facility on private land in La Crosse County. Xcel Energy may also opt to build up to one megawatt of additional community solar that could be operational in 2017. The two community solar gardens are expected to be operational by the end of 2016.

XCEL ENERGY NAMED NO. 1 WIND PROVIDER FOR 12TH CONSECUTIVE YEAR

Xcel Energy’s leadership in wind energy has reached another milestone as the American Wind Energy Association
named the company the country’s top utility wind energy provider for the 12th consecutive year. Xcel Energy more
than doubled its wind ownership when it acquired the Pleasant Valley Wind Farm in Minnesota and Border Wind
Farm in North Dakota last year. Along with purchasing energy from new wind farms in Colorado and New Mexico,
the company increased its wind capacity 850 megawatts, or 15 percent, companywide in 2015. Xcel Energy will add
another 400 megawatts of wind to the system in 2016, by buying power from the Odell Wind Farm in Minnesota and
owning the Courtenay Wind Farm in North Dakota, when the plants are completed this year.

Xcel Energy Named No. 1 Wind Provider for 11th Consecutive Year

For the 11th consecutive year, Xcel Energy has been named the
country’s top utility wind energy provider by the American Wind
Energy Association, a national trade association. For more than a
decade, Xcel Energy has led the nation in providing wind energy
to its customers.

“Xcel Energy is proud to have grown the use of clean, emissions-
free wind energy at a reasonable cost for customers. Our wind
portfolio is second to none,” according to Ben Fowke, Chairman,
President and CEO of Xcel Energy.

In 2014, wind energy made up about 16 percent of the
company’s energy supply. Currently, Xcel Energy has 5,794
megawatts of wind power in its portfolio, enough to meet the
energy needs of nearly 2.9 million homes. According to a new
AWEA report, Xcel Energy is the first US. utility to exceed
5,000 megawatts of wind.  Only nine countries in the world,
in addition to the states of Texas, Iowa and California, have
more than 5,000 megawatts of wind capacity.

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