ALLETE Acquires Montana Wind Farm Project

ALLETE Clean Energy, a wholly-owned subsidiary of ALLETE Inc. will construct, own and operate an 80 MW wind energy facility near Great Falls, Montana, that will supply electricity to NorthWestern Energy under a power purchase agreement.
ALLETE Acquires Montana Wind Farm Project
The Spion Kop wind farm near Geyser (NorthWestern Energy)

ALLETE Clean Energy acquired the South Peak project from Peak Clean Energy and will manage construction of the wind facility, scheduled to be online by late 2019. Energy from South Peak will be delivered to NorthWestern Energy customers through a 15-year PPA.

“We’re excited to be working with our newest customer in NorthWestern Energy, and hope this project leads to more opportunities together in the future,” said ALLETE Clean Energy President Al Rudeck.

The South Peak project will utilize GE wind turbines and will be built adjacent to NorthWestern Energy’s existing Spion Kop wind facility, which is seven miles northeast of Raynesford, Montana. It will deliver energy via a direct connection to NorthWestern’s transmission grid, and has landowner agreements and design elements in place.

“We are delighted that ALLETE Clean Energy has selected GE’s advanced technology 2.X MW platform for this project, along with a 15-year servicing agreement,” said Pete McCabe, President and CEO of GE’s Onshore Wind Business.

To qualify for federal renewable energy production tax credits, the project will utilize a share of wind turbines ALLETE Clean Energy purchased in 2016 that meet the standards for the production tax credit “safe harbor” provision. The safe harbor turbine investment allows the company to pursue its three-pronged production tax credit strategy that includes building and operating new wind farms based on long-term power sale agreements, building wind farms for other companies through a build-transfer structure, and refurbishing existing wind farms while extending power sale agreements.

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