Carousel Wind Farm
In February 2014, Tri-State entered into a 25-year agreement with a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC for a 150 megawatt wind generating facility to be constructed in eastern Colorado in the service territory of Tri-State member, K. C. Electric Association (Hugo, Colo.).
Under the 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA), Tri-State will purchase the entire output and associated environmental attributes of the Carousel Wind Farm. The 150 MW facility will be Tri-State’s largest wind energy PPA to date.
The site will utilize a total of 88 GE 1.7-megawatt wind turbine generators and have the ability to produce over 600,000 megawatt-hours per year.
The project will interconnect to existing Tri-State transmission facilities in the Burlington area and is possible only because of planned transmission upgrades in the area. The upgrades have been in the planning process since 2010 and are expected to be completed in 2016.
The Carousel Wind Farm will be so named because of its relative proximity to the Kit Carson County Carousel, an antique amusement ride and national historic landmark located in nearby Burlington, Colo.
Colorado Highlands Wind Project
In February 2012, Tri-State signed a 20-year PPA to buy all of the output from the 67-megawatt Colorado Highlands Wind project in northeastern Colorado. The 6,640-acre site, which is owned and operated by Colorado Highlands Wind, LLC, began commercial operation on Dec. 6, 2012.
In October 2013, the project expanded by adding an additional 14 1.7-megawatt GE turbines, increasing the facility’s total current capacity by 36 percent to a total of 91 megawatts.
The wind farm is located about 25 miles northeast of Sterling, Colo., where it receives station electric service from Tri-State member Highline Electric Association, based in Holyoke, Colo.
This facility has a total of 56 General Electric wind turbine generators equipped with the latest industry technology, including the longer 100-meter blade length for maximum performance and efficiency and “smart” turbine blades designed with built-in wind velocity sensors that trigger real-time blade pitch adjustments as the wind velocity varies.
Estimated annual energy output is 410,000 megawatt-hours, which roughly translates to electric service for up to 27,000 homes.
Kit Carson Windpower Project
In July 2009, Tri-State entered into a 20-year agreement with a subsidiary of Duke Energy Corp. to purchase the output of a 51-megawatt wind farm in east-central Colorado. The Kit Carson Windpower Project, named for the county in which it will be sited, was completed November 2010 and is comprised of 34 1.5-megawatt General Electric turbines on a 6,000-acre site northwest of Burlington, Colo. - within the service territory of Tri-State member co-op K.C. Electric Association. The facility can generate enough electricity to power the requirements of 12,000 to 14,000 homes.
Other wind sources
As a member of Basin Electric Power Cooperative in Bismarck, N.D., Tri-State also purchases a portion of its available wind generation from Basin's Prairie Winds Program. Prairie Winds is comprised of 20 wind project sites totaling 719 megawatts of capacity.
Updated: February 6, 2014