California Buys Wind for Long-Term Peak Power

The California Department of Water Resources will purchase electricity from a windfarm in the San Gorgonio region to provide peak power.

SACRAMENTO, California, US, 2001-09-11 [] DWR will pay US$60 per megawatt for wind generation from Whitewater Energy Corporation. Two contracts were signed for 12 year terms, providing a total capacity of 108 megawatts of wind power. The state signed other long-term contracts to obtain 500 MW of critical peak power this year. Two ten-year deals with CalPeak Power and Wellhead Power will involve 470 MW at an average cost of $100 to $110 per megawatt-hour. Another ten-year contract with PacifiCorp Power Marketing will provide 300 MW by 2004, at a cost of $70 per megawatt. “These agreements provide California with power during the most critical peak demand times,” says Ray Hart of DWR. “These types of dispatchable contracts are essential to helping the state avoid electrical shortages and, more importantly, rolling blackouts.” DWR was created by the California Legislature in 1956 to plan development of the state’s water resources. It has a staff of 2,700 and an annual budget of $1 billion.
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