published Thursday, May 19th, 2011

2 wind farms spin on outfit’s horizon

A Chattanooga company will design, engineer and construct a pair of wind farms in Oklahoma and Texas that together will produce enough electricity to power over 30,000 homes, officials say.

“These projects are a significant step forward to realizing our country’s clean energy future,” said Signal Energy President Ben Fischer.

The Oklahoma project’s first phase will produce 80 megawatts of power and eventually reach 370 megawatts when complete, according to the company.

The project, owned by California-based DeWind Co., will be the largest utility-scale wind farm in Oklahoma’s Panhandle.

Kent Prentice, DeWind’s manager of sales, said the power produced at the wind farms will go to electrical grid operator Southwest Power Pool.

He said the wind turbines will be made in the company’s Round Rock, Texas, facilities.

Workers on the Texas County, Okla., wind farm will break ground by mid-2011 with commercial operations starting in the first quarter of 2012.

The Texas project, to go up in Hansford County, will produce 20 megawatts of power and is slated to go into commercial operation by the end of 2011.

According to the companies, both projects are to offset almost 142.5 tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year.

Officials at both companies declined to say how much the projects cost.

Signal spokeswoman Cortney Piper said the Oklahoma project is not the largest for the company, which has 60 employees. She said it has built more than 100 megawatts of power generating capacity.

about Mike Pare...

Mike Pare, the deputy Business editor at the Chattanooga Times Free Press, has worked at the paper for 27 years. In addition to editing, Mike also writes Business stories and covers Volkswagen, economic development and manufacturing in Chattanooga and the surrounding area. In the past he also has covered higher education. Mike, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Florida Atlantic University. he worked at the Rome News-Tribune before ...

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