BP Wind Energy and Sempra U.S. Gas & Power have announced that the Flat Ridge 2 Wind Farm located in Kansas, US, has moved into full commercial operation. It is the largest, single-build wind farm in the history of the US wind industry and represents a major investment in renewable power for US consumers.
Located on a 66,000-acre site spanning Harper, Barber, Kingman and Sumner counties, the Flat Ridge 2 Wind Farm is the largest wind farm in the state of Kansas.
BP and Sempra US Gas & Power are 50:50 joint venture partners for the 470 megawatt (MW) Flat Ridge 2 Wind Farm that represents a combined investment in excess of $800 million. A wholly owned affiliate of BP Wind Energy will be the operator.
The project created over 500 jobs during the peak of construction and some 30 permanent jobs have been created to monitor and maintain the facility now that it is online. The wind farm utilizes 294 GE wind turbines each with a rated capacity of 1.6 MW generating enough electricity to power over 140,000 average American homes.
The entire power output from the wind farm has been sold under long-term power purchase agreements to Associated Electric Cooperative, Inc. (310 MW), Southwestern Electric Power Company, a unit of American Electric Power (109 MW), and Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corporation (51 MW), a Little Rock-based generation and transmission cooperative. Power generated from the Flat Ridge 2 Wind Farm will be exported to Missouri, Arkansas and Louisiana.
"The state of Kansas has created a predictable, stable environment in which companies can invest and do business," said John Graham, president and CEO, BP Wind Energy. "The Flat Ridge 2 Wind Farm is a testament to the success of this strategy and is helping the state to be a net exporter of energy. This pro-growth strategy is the kind of approach wind energy needs from state legislators and BP looks forward to further expanding its wind energy footprint in Kansas if and when the business opportunity becomes available."
"This is a world-class project and a great example of why strong state and local leadership is essential in both attracting investment and ensuring the optimal use of our clean natural resources," said Jeffrey W. Martin, president and CEO of Sempra US Gas & Power. "Our strategic partnership with BP Wind Energy has allowed Sempra US Gas & Power to accelerate its growth into renewable energy and we are on track to reaching our goal of creating 1,400 MW of renewable energy capacity."