Des Moines-based MidAmerican Energy has identified the sites where the company will put up to 448 new wind turbines to generate electricity. Company spokesperson, Abby Bottenfield, says the project will created 460 temporary construction jobs.
“The company continues working with county officials and land owners to allow for the projects to move forward, and has secured development and interconnection rights for the majority of the wind farm sites, which will be located in Grundy, Madison, Marshall, O’Brien and Webster counties,” Bottenfield says.
She says there will be 50 permanent jobs created to keep the wind farms running. MidAmerican currently has 1,260 wind turbines in the state.
“That comprises about 30-percent of our (electric) generation, and after the wind installations (it will) comprise approximately 39-percent wind, making our portfolio 39-percent wind, 33-percent coal, 18-percent natural gas, 6-percent nuclear and 4-percent other by July of 2016,” Bottenfield says.
They plan to start construction in September and the work should be completed by the end of 2015. “The wind expansion will have no impact to the company’s current Iowa rate case, and will have no net cost to the company’s customers,” according to Bottenfield.
“And in the long run will help to stabilized electric rates over the long term by providing a rate reduction totaling about 10-million per year by 2017. And that commences with a three-point-three-million reduction in 2015.”
MidAmerican Energy is Iowa’s largest energy company with 734,000 electric customers and 714,000 natural gas customers in Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska and South Dakota.