The North Bend Wind Project was approved, though with conditions, by the South Dakota regulators. ENGIE North America proposed the 200MW wind facility.
In December 2022, Basin Electric Power Cooperative, a North Dakota-based electric generation and transmission cooperative, signed a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement for output from the bend wind project. The output will become operational in the last quarter of 2023. It will be another great plus to Basin Electric’s renewable energy mix and diverse energy portfolio.
ENGIE is a world-leading, low-carbon energy and services organization. ENGIE North America Inc. ENGIE’s regional hub. The organization, at large, is committed to the acceleration of the transition to a carbon-neutral world through eco-friendly solutions and reduced energy consumption.
Currently, ENGIE is working on 5GW of solar, battery, and wind energy storage projects across Canada and the United States. With the North Bend Wind Project, ENGIE estimates the creation of over 250 jobs, eight to ten of them being long-term operational roles.
Basin Electric is a regional cooperative with headquarters in Bismark, North Dakota. The consumer-owned entity generates and transmits electricity to all of its 131 member rural electric systems. The member systems are spread across nine states; Minnesota, Iowa, Colorado, New Mexico, Montana, North Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming, and South Dakota. They distribute electricity to over 3 million consumer-owners.
The project is anticipated to consist of up to 71 wind turbines spread over 47,000 acres of land in Hughes and Hyde County. The location is near the company’s 92-tower Triple H Wind farm.
The conditions that regulatory approval came with resulted from the project’s possible interference with the farmers’ activities in the area. The farmers claimed that the wind turbines could make it hard for aircraft to spray crop pesticides and would lose over $600 per acre should their sunflower fields go untreated.
The developers agreed that a site manager would work with pilots to pick an appropriate time to shut down the turbines so the aircraft could spray the fields unhindered.
The project would also hinder an air route surveillance radar located 40 nautical miles away. The project could fall within the instrument’s line of sight, which would be a problem as it is partly owned by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the department of defense.
Basic Electric plans to build a 583 MW natural gas-fueled power station in North Dakota, near the existing pioneer generation station Northwest of Williston. It will cost $790 million.
The project’s first phase is anticipated to be in service by 2025, and it will consist of a 240 Mw simple-cycle combustion turbine and a series of reciprocating engines. The engines will total 108MW and 15 miles of 345 Kilovolt transmission. The second phase is expected to be in service by 2026 and will consist of a 240MW simple-cycle combustion turbine.
According to ENGIE, the North Bend Wind project’s output (renewable electricity) will be sufficient to cover the electricity needs of up to 73,000 average US households.