More wind turbines are coming to Iowa. Alliant Energy on Wednesday announced plans for a $1 billion project to expand the Whispering Willow Wind Farm in Franklin County and possibly develop wind energy in other areas of the state.
Meanwhile, in northwest Iowa, Tradewind Energy Development Manager Jeff Hammond has released details about a pair of projects. The “North Star” project — primarily in Dickinson County — would involve 70 turbines creating 140 megawatts of power.
“And just south of that (in Emmet County) is a project we’re calling RedRock. That project looks to be about 360 megawatts with 180 turbines,” Hammond said. A transmission line is going up in Palo Alto County as part of the projects. Hammond expects the new wind turbines will create up to 15 permanent jobs, plus 150 construction jobs.
“There are also the landowner payments, for leasing their land, that will generate even more money into the economy and allow those landowners to continue to farm their land,” Hammond said. “The placement of these facilities will take only one-to-two percent of the land out of production.” The RedRock Wind Project is called the largest community wind farm in the state of Iowa.
The state of Iowa, last year, generated over 31 percent of its electricity from wind power, ranking first in the nation. Iowa now ranks second in the country for “installed capacity,” according to the American Wind Energy Association.
(By Ryan Long, KICD, Spencer)