State regulators have given Iowa’s largest utility the green light for boosting its capacity to generate electricity using wind power. Allan Urlis, spokesman for MidAmerican Energy, says Iowa’s quickly becoming a national leader in harnessing the blowing breezes to power our homes and businesses.
Urlis says the Iowa Utilities Board has given MidAmerican the go-ahead to construct wind turbines to generate 540 megawatts of electricity — enough to power 192-thousand homes. While the Des Moines-based utility already has many dozens of turbines in wind farms across the state, Urlis says they’ll be building more of the giant propellers in seven locations.
In the Pocahontas County town of Pomeroy, an existing wind farm will be expanded, along with new facilities planned in or near: Adair, Carroll, Charles City, Orient, Spencer and Walnut. Urlis says MidAmerican is in the midst of negotiating with a number of landowners in locations all over the state.
He says:"Where the sites ultimately end up being placed and how large they are will depend on the success of being able to obtain easement agreements from landowners. This is purely voluntary. It’s up to them whether they want to participate." Urlis says the cost of the project is being kept confidential. He says it won’t cost customers anything as MidAmerican’s electric rates are frozen until at least 2014.