New Wind Farm Advances Energy 2030 Goals
Our utility subsidiary, Madison Gas and Electric (MGE), is proposing to construct, own and operate its largest wind farm to date. This 66-megawatt (MW) wind farm would be located about 200 miles west of Madison near Saratoga, Iowa. The construction-ready site is well situated due to its strong winds and proximity to transmission infrastructure.
MGE began site selection in 2015 and in 2016 secured development rights from the initial wind farm developer RPM Access LLC, which had designated the site for wind development.
On Feb. 21, 2017, MGE filed with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSCW) a letter notifying the commission of MGE's intent to seek approval to build Saratoga. MGE anticipates filing its formal application with the PSCW in March. If the Saratoga Wind Farm receives regulatory approval, construction of the approximately $107 million project could begin in 2018.
MGE Energy is committed to making responsible investments to provide value for customers and to grow our asset base. In the last 10 years, MGE Energy's assets have nearly doubled.
The project's 33 wind turbines would stand nearly 500 feet tall. Wind turbine technology has improved with larger turbines producing energy more efficiently and more cost effectively. Using the federal Production Tax Credit for wind allows MGE to provide clean, renewable energy to customers at a lower price than other options available to MGE.
Energy 2030 framework
With the Saratoga project, MGE is advancing Energy 2030—our ambitious framework for a more sustainable energy future. Energy 2030 continues our long-term direction of reducing carbon emissions, greater use of renewables in our electric supply mix, innovative products and services for our customers, and ongoing partnerships.
Under our now completed Energy 2015 framework, MGE increased energy from renewable resources by almost 12 times and reduced carbon emissions 20% between 2005 and 2015. Energy 2030 sets the goals of supplying 30% of retail electric sales with renewable resources by 2030 and of reducing carbon emissions by 40% from 2005 levels by 2030.
Energy 2030 and the proposed Saratoga project continue MGE's ongoing transition toward a more sustainable future for our customers and our communities.