Slew of renewable energy projects came online in January

There was 613 MW of new electric power generation commissioned during the first month of 2016 and virtually all of it was renewable, according to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

FERC‘s Office of Energy Projects released its Energy Infrastructure Update for January on March 3.

The monthly report indicates that there was 468 MW of new wind power and 145 MW of new solar power installed during the month. There was no conventional power plant generation installed during the month. The January 2016 total was also below the January 2015 installation mark of 1,075 MW, according to FERC.

The total installed capacity (not to be confused with actual power generation) is almost 43 percent natural gas; 26 percent coal; 9 percent nuclear; almost 9 percent water/hydro; more than 6 percent wind and almost 4 percent oil.

Biomass accounts for more than 1 percent of the generation mix, as does solar power. Other sources, including geothermal and waste heat account for a combined total that’s less than 1 percent of the nation’s generation capacity.

Here is the FERC rundown of generation projects that came online in January:

“-MidAmerican Energy’s 153.4 MW Adams Wind Project in Adams County, IA is online.

“-Fowler Ridge IV Wind Farm LLC’s 150 MW Amazon Wind Farm Expansion Project in Benton County, IN is online. The power generated is sold to Amazon Web Services under long-term contract.

“-Los Vientos Windpower IV LLC’s 110 MW Los Vientos Windpower Phase 2 Expansion Project in Starr County, TX is online. The power generated is sold to Bryan Texas Utilities, Garland Power and Light, and Greenville Electric Utility System under long-term contract.

“-Milo Wind Project LLC’s 50 MW Milo Wind Project in Roosevelt County, NM is online. The power generated is sold to Southwestern Public Service Co. under long-term contract.

“-Patriot Renewables LLC’s 4.5 MW Beaver Ridge Hill Wind Project in Waldo County, ME is online.

“-Solar Star California XIII, LLC’s 108 MW Sun Power Solar Star XIII Project in Merced County, CA is online. The power generated is sold to Southern California Edison under long-term contract.

“-8 Minutes Energy Renewables LLC’s 27 MW Hayworth Solar Farm Project in Kern County, CA is online. The power generated is sold to the City of Palo Alto under long-term contract.

“-Silicon Ranch Corp’s 4 MW Skylark Solar Project and 4 MW Valley View Solar Project, both in Weld County, CO are online. The power generated is sold to Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association under long-term contracts.

“-NRG Energy’s 2 MW Mandalay Bay (MGM) Solar Expansion Project in Clark County, NV is online. The power generated is sold to MGM Resorts International under long-term contract.

“-Willey Battery Utility LLC’s Willey Battery Storage Project in Hamilton County, OH is online. The facility will provide supply-demand balancing service for the frequency regulation market of PJM.

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Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 22 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants.

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