Federal judge sides with Xcel on cancelled ND wind project

A federal district judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by EnXco against Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL) for a 2010 decision to cancel a wind power project in North Dakota that posed a potential risk to two protected bird species, according to a report for the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

EnXco was to be the developer for the $400 million project, which was seen to be a risk to the piping plover and whooping crane, and sued Xcel for not completing the 100-turbine wind farm. The judge, however, dismissed the case, stating that Xcel had the right to terminate its agreement at a drop-dead date of March 31, 2010, because EnXco had not yet obtained a site permit for the project, according to the report.

According to the Star Tribune, the judge wrote in an order that EnXco has entered into many similar projects and the court could infer the company “is knowledgeable of the varying risks that may arise with respect to such projects.”

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