Xcel Energy breaks ground on 150-MW Foxtail Wind project in North Dakota

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Xcel Energy recently celebrated the groundbreaking of its 150-MW Foxtail Wind project in Fargo, North Dakota, U.S.

Construction on this project started earlier this summer. It spans 35,000 acres, 99% of which will remain available for agricultural production, Xcel Energy says. The site will host 75 turbines (manufactured by Vestas) placed on concrete foundations being installed this year. When it begins operating in late 2019, Foxtail Wind will provide electricity to nearly 80,000 homes.

“In North Dakota there is no shortage of wind, and when we can harness this natural force, it powers homes and communities, and creates thousands of jobs as part of a true-all-of-the-above energy strategy,” said U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp, who attended the groundbreaking. “Today’s groundbreaking reinforces what good can come when we make needed investments in wind energy development.”

Wanzek Construction, a subsidiary of MasTec Inc., is building the project.

Construction of this project is expected to employ about 100 workers over 2018 and 2019, and an additional 10 workers will maintain and operate the facility. Local landowners will receive $30 million in lease payments over the next 30 years, and local governments will receive $20 million in property taxes.

As previously reported, Xcel Energy acquired the Foxtail project (also called the Foxtail Wind Energy Center) in April 2018, saying it was part of the company’s vision to achieve 85% clean energy by 2030. The project is part of a 1,850-MW portfolio of wind projects Xcel Energy is adding in the Upper Midwest over the next several years, according to a press release.

Xcel Energy generates electricity from coal, nuclear, natural gas, wind, solar, biomass and hydropower. The company provides power to “millions of homes and businesses” across eight states in the West and Midwest.

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