From an article by Tom Content in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Wind turbine prices have fallen significantly in recent months amid the economic slowdown, and that, in turn, has brought down the projected cost to build the state’s largest wind farm.
The Glacier Hills Wind Park in Columbia County is now projected to cost a maximum of $413.5 million, down from a projection of $525.6 million when We Energies announced the project last year.
The Milwaukee utility is seeking to build the project in the next several years to comply with a state law that requires 10% of Wisconsin’s electricity be supplied by wind turbines and other renewable energy sources by 2015.
“Market conditions for the procurement of wind turbine equipment have changed considerably” since the utility first submitted its proposal to the state Public Service Commission, We Energies said in a filing with state regulators.
We Energies is proposing a 90-turbine wind power project, the Glacier Hills Wind Park, northeast of Madison. It would be the largest wind farm in the state, slightly bigger than the 88-turbine Blue Sky Green Field wind farm We Energies began operating near Fond du Lac last year.
Glacier Hills would generate enough power over a year to supply 45,000 typical homes, the utility says.
The utility also said it has reached an agreement with Vestas to supply turbines for the wind project, if the development is given the go-ahead by state regulators.
The drop in prices for wind turbines is linked to the recession and a slowdown in wind power development caused by both the economy and tight credit markets.