MidAmerican Wind X11 site locations unknown

Source: By Paul Struck, Chronicle Times • Posted: Tuesday, January 8, 2019

MidAmerican Energy has proposed an additional investment of $922 million for its Wind XII project expected to be completed in late 2020 “somewhere in Iowa.”

Over the past three years, MidAmerican Energy has moved forward with its Wind XI project, that when combined with Wind XII, will provide customers with 100 percent renewable energy on an annual basis. And, like MidAmerican’s previous wind projects, Wind XII will be accomplished without the need to ask for an increase in customers’ rates.

Wind X1 consists of turbines in operation in Greene, Boone, Mahaska, Adair, Grundy and Poweshiek counties.

The company estimates Wind XII will create more than 300 full-time jobs related to construction and another 28 full-time positions for ongoing operations and maintenance.

In addition, they say Wind XII will provide an average $6.9 million per year in additional Iowa property tax payments on wind turbines and nearly $5.6 million more in annual landowner easement payments. In 2017, MidAmerican Energy paid $19.6 million in Iowa property taxes on wind turbines.

The company is currently exploring potential wind farm sites in Iowa and will announce wind farm locations prior to constructing each site. Procuring proper permits, easements, right-of-ways, and willing land owners is a tedious economic endeavor. And if the word gets out, pure speculation would drive land prices over the moon. Hence, the secrecy or uncertainty about locations until the pony’s in the barn.

Locally, MidAmerican Energy also has two large wind farms in operation in O’Brien County, and one each in Sac and Ida counties.

The Wind X11 project targeted to be online by 2020 is not affiliated with the Glaciers Edge Wind Farm now under development in Cherokee County east and north of Marcus.

The proposed 200 MW wind farm in Cherokee County will be constructed beginning in spring 2019 and online by December 2019, according to developer EDF Renewables.

EDF Renewables has signed an agreement to supply Google, a subsidiary company of Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL) with 200 megawatts (MW) of wind energy generated from the new Glaciers Edge Wind Project.

Benefiting involved land owners bank accounts and spiking County tax revenue when completed, Glaciers Edge Wind Project is expected to create more than 150 jobs during the construction phase, along with millions of dollars injected into the local economy. Once the wind farm comes online in December 2019, the additional capacity will help Google reach its goal of purchasing enough renewable energy to match its energy consumption for global operations.