May 17, 2020

Xcel and NextEra Sign Deal for Low-Cost Wind Farm

Wind
Energy
Power
Xcel
Admin
2 min
To make wind farms more economical, Xcel Energy and NextEra Energy Resources sign a deal for a new low-cost wind farm.
For years now weve seen the banter go back and forth between policymakers, businessmen, and the media in regard to the economic viability of wind power...

For years now we’ve seen the banter go back and forth between policymakers, businessmen, and the media in regard to the economic viability of wind power as a utilities-scale energy provider.  Technological advances and government subsidies will surely bring down the bottom line in wind power development, but let’s not forget how significant a role business partnerships can play in achieving the same goal.  Xcel Energy and NextEra Energy Resources have signed a contract to develop a new low-cost 200 MW wind farm in Colorado.

According to Xcel, the arrangement will allow for some of the cheapest wind power in the company’s portfolio. "Our contract with NextEra Energy Resources is one of the lowest we've ever seen and results in a savings of nearly 40 percent for our customers," says David Eves, president and CEO of Public Service Co. of Colorado, an Xcel Energy company.

He adds, "The addition of this 200-megawatt wind farm demonstrates that renewable energy can compete on an economic basis with more traditional forms of generation fuel, like natural gas, and allows us to meet the state's Renewable Energy Standard at a very reasonable cost to our customers."

The project was originally bid in January 2009, but 2010 saw an opportunity to rebid at a significant cost-reduction, which will offer a dramatic savings to customers. 

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The dramatic reduction in cost is the result of a slowing period in wind farm development resulting in a surplus of turbines in the American market.  The Colorado Public Utilities Commission’s confirmation of the market status ultimately led to the successful contract between Xcel and NextEra. 

The wind farm itself, dubbed the Limon Wind Energy Center, will consist of 125 turbines sitting atop 35,000 acres.  Construction will begin in early 2012 and completed later that year.  The addition of Limon will give Xcel Energy 1,943 MW of total installed capacity of wind power in Colorado.  

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Apr 12, 2021

ScottishPower submits plans for UK's largest electrolyser

Hydrogen
Renewables
scotland
UK
Dominic Ellis
3 min
The 20MW electrolyser will be the key component of a green hydrogen facility close to ScottishPower’s Whitelee windfarm
The 20MW electrolyser will be the key component of a green hydrogen facility close to ScottishPower’s Whitelee windfarm...

ScottishPower has submitted a planning application to deliver the UK’s largest electrolyser which will be the key component of a green hydrogen facility located close to its Whitelee windfarm. 

Alongside the 20MW electrolyser, the application also includes proposals for a combined solar and battery energy storage scheme - up to 40MW and 50MW respectively - to power the electrolyser. They will be installed about 5km west of Lochgoin Reservoir and next to the existing Whitelee Extension substation.

The submission marks an important step for Green Hydrogen for Scotland, a partnership between ScottishPower, BOC and ITM Power, to create green hydrogen production facilities with clusters of refuelling stations across Scotland.

The proposed green hydrogen project will be engineered and operated by BOC, using wind and solar power produced by ScottishPower Renewables, and the electrolyser will be delivered by ITM Power. The project aims to supply hydrogen to the commercial market before 2023.

Green Hydrogen for Glasgow aims to provide carbon-free transport and clean air for communities across Glasgow as well as helping support industrial hydrogen demand in the region. The city, set to host the United Nations 26th Climate Change Conference, COP26, later this year, aims to become the first net zero city in the UK by 2030.   

Barry Carruthers, ScottishPower’s Hydrogen Director, said: “With all eyes set to be on Glasgow later this year as the city hosts the UN’s 26th climate change conference, COP26, it’s fantastic to be making this next important step towards delivering green hydrogen for Glasgow.

“Whitelee keeps breaking barriers, first the UK’s largest onshore windfarm, and soon to be home to the UK’s largest electrolyser. The site has played a vital role in helping the UK to decarbonise and we look forward to delivering another vital form of zero carbon energy generation at the site to help Glasgow and Scotland achieve their net zero goals.”

He added green hydrogen has a vital role to play in Scotland and the wider UK’s journey to Net Zero emissions, providing a sustainable energy source that can provide clean, renewable energy for industries, heavy transport and companies for future decades.

Green hydrogen is a zero carbon energy source which can be used by industries and companies that cannot fully electrify their operations to help them lower their emissions, for example, heavy duty transport like buses and bin lorries.

The technology gets its name from the green power source, normally wind or solar, used to power an electrolyser to split water into its core elements; hydrogen and oxygen gas. The hydrogen can then be stored and transported for use as needed.

The green hydrogen facility at Whitelee, the UK’s largest onshore windfarm, will house a 20MW electrolyser and would be able to produce up to 8 tonnes of green hydrogen per day, roughly equivalent to fuelling over 550 buses to travel from Glasgow to Edinburgh and back again each day.

Graham Cooley, CEO ITM Power, said it marks an exciting milestone based on market development for green hydrogen for the city of Glasgow, that will see the UK’s largest electrolyser deployment to date being realised in Scotland.

Mark Griffin, Hydrogen Market Development Manager for Clean Fuels at BOC said: “The scale of this project demonstrates the growing demand for clean hydrogen and as a member of the Green Hydrogen for Scotland partnership, we’re delighted to bring our hydrogen mobility and refuelling project expertise to help deliver a ground-breaking facility in Glasgow.”

The hydrogen production facility could support Glasgow City Council as well as surrounding local authorities and industries in their ambitions to create a zero emissions vehicle fleet, using only electric and hydrogen-powered vehicles by the end of 2029.

ScottishPower expects a decision on the planning application in autumn.

The UK recently announced a £3 million investment to develop the Tees Valley hydrogen transport hub (click here). 

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