Public Service of Oklahoma (PSO) has won approval from state regulators for three 20-year contracts to purchase 598.7MW of power from three wind farms that will enter service by the end of 2015.
The deals are for 200MW
with TradeWind Energy, which will site its facility near Goodwell in Oklahoma’s
Panhandle; 199.8MW with Apex Clean Energy for its wind farm near Balko, also in
the Panhandle; and 198.9MW with NextEra Energy from a wind farm in Seiling in northwestern
“These contracts were based on
extraordinary pricing opportunities that will provide substantial savings for
our customers,” says PSO President Stuart Solomon. “Another benefit is the
diversity that an additional 600MW of Oklahoma wind energy will bring to our
The utility issued a request
for supply proposals to replace a 10-year supply deal for 151MW of wind that
expires in 2015. The supplier had already contracted with another buyer after
then, PSO spokesman Stan Whiteford tells Recharge.
PSO obtained bids with pricing
that was cheaper than either natural gas or coal with the federal production
tax credit factored in. It also reflects the excellent wind resource in
Oklahoma which enables latest generation turbines to operate at 50-60%
The pricing was so good
that it decided to contract for almost four times as much wind as planned, says
Whiteford. PSO estimates in the first year alone, its customers will save $53m
in fuel adjustment costs.
When the three new projects
come into service, wind will account for 20% of PSO’s overall generation mix
and raise contracted wind to 1,137MW.