in News Departments > New & Noteworthy
print the content item



Recently approved power purchase agreements (PPAs) by the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) underscore the continuation of several positive trends of late, including utility procurement of wind, the lowering of cost per MWh and the effectiveness of the production tax credit (PTC).

On May 15, the MPSC approved two PPAs between utility DTE Electric and two subsidiaries of NextEra Energy Resources: Pheasant Run Wind LLC and Pheasant Run Wind II LLC.

Each PPA is for 74.8 MW of wind energy for projects located in Michigan’s Thumb region. The MPSC also approved an option for DTE Electric to purchase the Pheasant Run Wind II project.

With the addition of 150 MW of wind energy, a DTE Electric spokesperson tells NAW that the utility is close to meeting Michigan's 10% (and 1,100 MW) by 2015 renewable portfolio standard (RPS). Further, with the completion of the wind projects expected in 2014, DTE will meet the RPS one year early.

According to the filing, the price for each PPA is "up to" $49.25/MWh, which is a great price considering that wind in Michigan used to be $110/MWh, explains Peter Kelley, spokesperson for the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).

"It is a clear demonstration that the price of wind continues to come down," Kelley explains, citing industry statistics that show the price of wind energy has declined 33% over a three-year period. And in the Michigan case, says Kelley, "the cost has come down more than half."

Notably, the NextEra bids were submitted on timetable to make them PTC eligible, which Kelley says is yet another indicator that having predictable policy works.

"Without it, wind becomes more expensive," he says. "And the utility is able to lock-in steady and predictable rates over the long term."

However, not all wind industry participants, such as developer Geronimo Energy LLC, were thrilled with NextEra's unsolicited bid.

Geronimo claimed that its 100 MW Apple Blossom wind project, located in Huron County, Mich., is a competing proposal and as such, should be considered by the utility as a competitive bid. However, the MPSC denied the developer's request.


Trachte Inc._id1770
Latest Top Stories

Eagle Take Permits For Wind Farms - Will They Fly?

Now that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has issued the first permit allowing the legal take of eagles, can wind developers expect more certainty in the agency's application process?


Despite 2013 Challenges, U.S. Wind Power Reaches All-Time Low Price

In a new report, the U.S. Department of Energy details the highs and lows of the country's wind industry last year, and the agency maintains that the U.S. sector remains strong.


Mexico On Pace To Set New Renewables Investment Record

A new report says the country has spent $1.3 billion on clean energy in the first half of 2014 and could end up seeing a record year. Furthermore, wind power is slated for significant growth in the region.


IRS Issues More PTC Guidance, Easing Some Wind Industry Concerns

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) addresses how much work is needed on a wind farm to satisfy production tax credit (PTC) eligibility.


Embryonic No More: U.S. Offshore Wind Industry Gaining Momentum

After a decade of fits and starts, the industry is moving closer to installing the first generation of wind projects off the country's shores.

Renewable NRG_id1934
Canwea_id1984
Tower Conference_id1965