ACCIONA Energy has started construction work on the 93-megawatt (MW) San Roman Wind Farm, located near the southeast coast of Texas. It is the eighth wind farm owned by the company in the United States, bringing ACCIONA’s US wind power capacity to 721 MW. The project was acquired by ACCIONA Energy from developer Pioneer Green Energy.
Located in Cameron County, the San Roman Wind Farm will be equipped with 31 ACCIONA Windpower AW125/3000 turbines. Each turbine has a rotor diameter of 125 meters and will be mounted on an 87.5 meter steel tower. The new wind farm will be operational by the end of 2016.
The San Roman Wind Farm will produce enough clean energy to power more than 30,000 U.S. homes. The electricity generated by the project will help create a more reliable power supply for Texas’ Rio Grande Valley, an area that has suffered rolling blackouts in recent years due to a lack of local electric resources.
As ACCIONA Energy North America CEO Ilya Hartmann explains, “The San Roman Wind Farm represents ACCIONA’s renewed investment activity in the important United States market. ACCIONA is working to grow its renewable energy portfolio in the U.S. and Canada and the San Roman project is an important step toward that goal.”
Greg Buis, president of Pioneer Green, stated: “We are proud of the success of this project achieved through the dedication of many different people, including local landowners and the teams working at ACCIONA and Pioneer Green. Due to the combined efforts of all those involved, the San Roman project will provide affordable, renewable domestic energy for decades to come.”
The San Roman Wind Farm will create roughly 80 full-time jobs during construction and seven permanent jobs during the operations phase. Over its 25-year lifespan, the project is expected to pay more than $30 million in local taxes to benefit entities such as the Cameron County schools, water districts and hospitals and is expected to generate more than $25 million in lease payments to local landowners. ACCIONA will also establish a scholarship fund and a community benefit fund to support the community.
The recent long-term extension of the federal Production Tax Credit (PTC) is an important factor in ACCIONA’s decision to increase investment in US wind energy projects.
Presence in North America
ACCIONA currently has 628 MW of wind power capacity operational in the United States, with three wind farms in Oklahoma (329 MW), one in North and South Dakota (180 MW), one in Illinois (100.5 MW) and another two in North Dakota and Iowa (12 MW and 6 MW respectively). It also has a 64 MW concentrating solar plant in Nevada.
In nearby countries, the company has 181 MW of operational wind power capacity in Canada (in Alberta, Ontario and New Brunswick) and 556 MW in Mexico (all in Oaxaca).
With the new wind farm, ACCIONA Energy’s renewable energy capacity will exceed 1,500 MW in North America.
ACCIONA will invest around $2.5 billion by 2020 to build new renewable energy installations worldwide, increasing the Company’s capacity by approximately 1,900 MW.