The US Department of Energy has approved the partial guarantee for a $1.3 billion loan to support the construction of the world’s largest wind farm, located in eastern Oregon. Known as the Caithness Energy LLC’s Shepherds Flat Wind Project, the renewable energy initiative will give way to a massive 845-megawatt wind-powered energy generating facility located immediately south of the Columbia River, built on approximately 32,000 acres in Gilliam and Morrow counties.
Sponsored by Caithness and General Electric (GE) Energy Financial Services, the project will consist of 338 of GE’s 2.5xl turbines, making it the first of its type to be deployed in North America. The wind farm’s construction is expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 1,215,991 each year – an amount equivalent to the annual output of 212,141 passenger vehicles.
Once the wind farm is complete it will sell all of its generated power to Southern California Edison under a 20-year fixed-price power purchase agreement. The Shepherds Flat Project is the largest project to ever receive an offer of conditional commitment for a loan guarantee under the Financial Institution Partnership Program (FIPP), a DOE program supported by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
“Thanks to the Recovery Act, we are creating the clean energy jobs of the future while positioning the U.S. as a world leader in the production of renewable energy,” said Secretary of Energy Steven Chu. “This project is part of the Administration’s commitment to doubling our renewable energy generation by 2012 while putting Americans to work in communities across the country.”
via EERE News