This week, Pattern Energy Group Inc. held a grand opening ceremony for its 79.75 MW Stillwater Wind facility, located in Stillwater County, Mont.
Attending the ribbon-cutting ceremony were Gov. Steve Bullock, D-Mont., and U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont.
“Montana ought to be in the driver’s seat when it comes to realizing renewable energy opportunities – and we can do so with new facilities like Stillwater Wind,” said Bullock. “We have incredible wind potential in this state, and I look forward to how this facility will benefit our clean air and water, grow our economy and local revenue, and support jobs in the community.”
“This facility shows that, with responsible energy development, we can have the best of both worlds,” said Tester. “We can create new jobs and economic opportunities while also working to address climate change.”
Stillwater Wind has a total of 31 Siemens Gamesa wind turbines: five 2.3 MW turbines with 108-meter rotors and 26 2.625 MW turbines with 120-meter rotors. Pattern Energy announced the completion of the project last November.
The project has a 25-year power purchase agreement for 100% of the energy produced. The facility interconnects to the local transmission provider’s 230 kV transmission line via a newly constructed 230 kV switching station.
Construction of the project created approximately 80 jobs within the local and regional communities; it is now employing up to six full-time personnel during operations. The two contractors responsible for construction of the project, Dick Anderson Construction and EPC Services Co., are both headquartered in Montana.
Over the first 25 years of the facility’s operational life, it is expected to produce more than $18 million in tax revenue. The local county will also receive impact fee payments over the first three years, in addition to royalty payments to participating landowners.
“Our first wind power facility in Montana is now generating strong benefits for the state, including millions of dollars in tax revenue, while producing enough clean energy to power 23,000 homes each year without any emissions,” said Mike Garland, CEO of Pattern Energy. “Montana has one of the strongest wind resources in the U.S., and we’re proud to be harnessing the power of its wind through this new facility.”