Otter Tail Power Company announces purchase of new wind farm in North Dakota

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Otter Tail Power Company announces purchase of new wind farm in North Dakota

November 17, 2016

Customers will receive approximately 28 percent of their energy from wind

FERGUS FALLS, Minn., Nov. 17, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Otter Tail Power Company signed agreements to purchase a 150-megawatt (MW) wind farm in southeastern North Dakota that EDF Renewable Energy will design and build in 2019. The company expects the project to cost more than $250 million and the wind farm to generate enough electricity to power more than 65,000 homes.

Identified as affordable, reliable resource
Otter Tail Power Company's resource plan identifies the most affordable and reliable combination of energy resources for meeting its customers' needs during the next 15 years. "The wind energy addition is part of our company's plan to meet our customers' growing energy needs, replace expiring power purchase agreements, and prepare for the 2021 retirement of the aging 140-MW coal-fired Hoot Lake Plant in Fergus Falls, Minnesota," said Otter Tail Power Company President Tim Rogelstad. Hoot Lake Plant Unit 2 has been on line since 1959. Unit 3 has been on line since 1964. The company also plans to add 250 MW of natural gas-fired generation in the next five years.

The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission approved Otter Tail Power Company's 2014-2028 resource plan that included the wind and natural gas-fired generation additions. The company again identified these additions in its proposed 2017-2032 resource plan, filed in June with regulatory commissions in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota.

Before construction can begin, Otter Tail Power Company and EDF Renewable Energy will seek required approvals from state regulatory agencies, and the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc. will need to authorize interconnection to the transmission system. "Upon completion, it will be the largest capital project in our company's history," said Rogelstad.

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