GE, Invenergy build wind farm in Oklahoma, biggest in the U.S.



(Reuters) – Power development company Invenergy LLC and General Electric Co on Wednesday announced plans to build the largest wind farm in the United States in Oklahoma, part of a $4.5 billion project to provide electricity to 1.1 million utility customers in the region.

The 2-gigawatt Wind Catcher wind farm is under construction in the Oklahoma panhandle and will come online in 2020. The facility will be linked to a 350-mile dedicated power line that will send the wind farm’s electricity to Tulsa.

American Electric Power Co Inc is asking utility regulators in Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma to approve plans to build the power line, which will serve customers of its Public Service Company of Oklahoma and Southwestern Electric Power Company regulated utility units.

The utilities also plan to buy the wind farm from Invenergy once it is built.

GE will provide 800 2.5-megawatt turbines for the project.

The cost of wind power has fallen dramatically in recent years, making it competitive with electricity generated from fossil fuels. The wind farm and transmission line are expected to save utility customers more than $7 billion over 25 years, the companies said in a joint statement.

The project will also support about 4,000 direct jobs during construction and 80 permanent jobs.

Reporting by Nichola Groom in Los Angeles; Editing by David Gregorio


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