Minnesota Power, a company of ALLETE, is in the process of building its first completely-owned wind farm located in North Dakota. Alan R. Hodnik, CEO and President of ALLETE, has gone on to quote the advantages that accrue from building the Bison Wind I project, with a capacity of 76 MW.
Hodnik has added that North Dakota is an energy-friendly and energy-rich state. He also thanked the regulatory officials and nearby residents for the co-operation received from them that led to the construction of the Bison Project. Hodnik added that both ALLETE and Minnesota Power are grateful to the many lease holders, option holders and also the government representatives who have understood their vision and supported the project.
The first phase construction work on the Bison Wind I project commenced a month ago. The will feature 33 units of Siemens turbines with 2.3 MW capacity each. Out of the 33 turbines, 16 are likely to be installed and functional by December 2010. The project is likely to cost about $178 million.
Minnesota Power has been in business since the 1970s in North Dakota. The Bison Wind I project is not only a milestone for the company but is also a milestone for the state of North Dakota as well. The Bison project is a key element in ALLETE’s strategy for increasing the volume of renewable power that can be generated as well as transported to key centers. Minnesota Power offers retail electric service to 144,000 customers within an area of 26,000 square miles located in northeastern Minnesota as well as wholesale electric service for 16 municipalities.