The wind power project, located 60 miles southwest of Chicago in Ford and Kankakee counties, is comprised of 92 Vestas V100 wind turbines. The facility will generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of 78,000 average Illinois homes, according to Energy Information Administration.
This is equivalent to avoiding more than 474,000 metric tons of CO₂ emissions annually, which represents the greenhouse gas emissions from 100,000 passenger vehicles driven over the course of one year. The project will sell electricity into the PJM wholesale market on a merchant basis.
“EDF Renewable Energy is pleased to announce commercial operation of the Kelly Creek Wind Project, which is now supplying cost-competitive, fixed-priced, clean energy to the PJM Energy Market,” said Ryan Pfaff, Executive Vice President for Development at EDF RE. “EDF RE is also proud of Kelly Creek’s positive economic impact, generated through the use of wind turbine towers, blades and nacelles manufactured at Vestas’ Colorado facilities, the creation of about 100 construction jobs and 10 long-term, full-time operations jobs, long-term lease payments to landowners, and recurring tax payments to local municipalities.”
According to the American Wind Energy Association, wind-supported jobs grew by 20 percent in 2015 alone. There are now 88,000 overall positions spread across all 50 states, and 380,000 jobs predicted by 2030. Wind energy not only offers rural America a weather-resistant cash crop but wind power is cost-competitive with all other sources of electricity in many areas of the country, saving consumers money on their electric bills and hedging against rising prices for fuel.
EDF Renewable Services, the leading provider of renewable operations and maintenance services in North America, will provide balance-of-plant operations and maintenance for the facility including 24/7 remote monitoring from its NERC compliant Operations Control Center (OCC). The OCC provides an efficient, reliable, and secure operating platform, while benefiting from the centralization of SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) functions and consolidation of multiple vendor SCADA environments to provide a common operating view. EDF Renewable Services has 11 GW under contract in North America.
EDF Renewable Energy is one of the largest renewable energy developers in North America with 8 gigawatts of wind, solar, biomass, and biogas projects developed throughout the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.