Duke quits Kentucky wind project

Duke Energy has backed away from what would have been the first commercial wind farm in the US state of Kentucky, amid local opposition to the project.

North Carolina-based Duke, the largest electricity company in the US and a top 10 wind operator, last year mooted the idea of a wind farm as large as 150MW in northeastern Kentucky, centered on Mason county.

But it has emerged that Duke has sent a letter to local officials confirming its “intent to discontinue” the tentatively-named Flemingsburg wind project, which had raised the ire of many in the affected communities, according to local press reports.

“We believe at this time [that] the project’s likelihood of success is marginal, and therefore plan on exploring other areas that require less resources in early-stage development and have a higher likelihood of success,” Milton Howard, an executive with Duke Energy Renewables, said in the letter.

Kentucky is one of 10 US states with no installed wind capacity, all of them located in the south and southeast.

Through its renewables subsidiary, Duke owns 1.6GW of wind capacity and another 100MW of solar.