Fergus Falls, Minn.-based Otter Tail Power signed a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) to acquire the output from the 62.4 MW Ashtabula III wind farm, located northeast of Valley City, N.D.
Ashtabula III, owned and operated by NextEra Energy Resources, consists of 39 1.6 MW GE XLE turbines. The wind farm began commercial operation in 2010. The contract includes an option for Otter Tail Power to own the wind farm in 10 years, notes the utility.
Harvey McMahon, Otter Tail's manager of renewable energy construction and operations, says this energy purchase was below the cost modeled in the company's biennial resource plan. In addition, the purchase positions Otter Tail to meet its renewable energy obligations in the three states it serves through 2025. Wind energy now supplies about 19% of Otter Tail Power's retail sales.