LOWELL, VT–(Marketwire – July 27, 2012)
The first turbine at Green Mountain Power’s 63-megawatt Kingdom Community Wind project has been erected.
“We’ve made tremendous progress on the project the last couple of months and are eagerly anticipating the project’s commissioning,” said Mary Powell, President and CEO of Green Mountain Power. “The mild winter allowed us to ramp construction back up in early April and we’ve been steadily moving forward since then. Today marks an important milestone in our effort to develop this clean, renewable energy for Vermont.”
The initial turbine is the first of 21 Vestas V112 3.0-megawatt turbines to be erected on Lowell Mountain that will generate enough renewable electricity for more than 24,000 Vermont homes.
“Kingdom Community Wind will be a major component of our power supply mix moving forward,” Powell said. “It will provide Vermonters with a clean, cost-effective and locally-produced source of power that aligns directly with Vermont’s renewable energy objectives.”
GMP received Public Service Board approval to build the Kingdom Community Wind facility in June of 2011 and broke ground on the project in September.
“All of our planning and preparation is proving to be invaluable as we continue to meet the highest environmental standards with our work,” Powell said. “We’re committed to following a strong environmental ethic with this project and are going above and beyond to make sure that happens.”
GMP’s environmental efforts are among the most extensive for such a project in Vermont. For example, for the first time for either wind or ski areas, there will be biological monitoring of streams during and following construction. GMP has also voluntarily collected data about the water chemistry of all the streams around the project to understand and protect future water quality.
The project will also continue to provide an economic boost to the Northeast Kingdom communities, including new jobs and economic activity during the construction phase, and ongoing benefits that include significant property tax payments to the Town of Lowell, tax payments to the state education fund and a Good Neighbor Fund to support five surrounding communities.
The project has employed more than 200 workers directly in construction, more than two-thirds from Vermont. Thirteen Vermont employers are actively engaged in building the wind project and over 100 Vermont-based firms and vendors have been involved in some aspect of Kingdom Community Wind.
Kingdom Community Wind will be GMP’s second wind farm. The company built a six-megawatt wind farm in Searsburg, Vt., in 1997, which continues to generate cost-effective energy for GMP customers.
The project has been well received by the Lowell community, where 75 percent of voters at a heavily attended March 2010 Town Meeting voted to support the project.
GMP expects the project to be operational by the end of 2012.About Green Mountain Power. Green Mountain Power (www.greenmountainpower.com) transmits, distributes and sells electricity in the State of Vermont. It serves more than 250,000 customers.