APS, Babcock & Brown Dedicate Wind Farm

Babcock & Brown and Arizona Public Service Co. (APS) dedicated the Aragonne Mesa Wind Project — a 90-megawatt (MW) wind farm located on a desolate mesa 25 miles southwest of Santa Rosa, New Mexico.

The project, which began energy production in December 2006, consists of 90 1-MW wind turbines that tower 227 feet using three, 63-foot blades. More than 35 miles of overhead transmission lines connect the facility to the Interconnect Substation. Because of a purchase power agreement (PPA) between APS and Babcock & Brown, electricity produced from the wind project is delivered to APS customers throughout Arizona. The agreement, when signed, expanded APS’ renewable portfolio from 16 MW (10 MW geothermal, 6 MW solar) to 106 MW — a 563 percent increase. The purchase of this wind power is paid for by APS customers and with the approval of the Arizona Corporation Commission. The project increased Babcock & Brown’s wind generation in New Mexico from 80 MW to 170 MW — the company also developed and operates the 80 MW Caprock wind farm near Tucumcari, NM, and is developing 130 additional MW of wind energy as Phase II at Aragonne Mesa. “As APS looks to meet the growing need for power in this state, renewable energy will play an increasingly larger role,” said Don Robinson, Vice President, Planning for APS. “This project marks a significant step in APS’ renewable energy commitment and we have many more milestones ahead of us.”

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