Fifteen percent by 2015, and twenty-five percent by 2025–that’s how much energy Oregon’s Renewable Energy Standard will require utility agencies to supply from renewable sources, and clearly, Portland General Electric (PGE) sees wind as a way to make it happen. The company recently put the finishing touches on the Bigelow Canyon Wind Farm, bringing 217 turbines online to generate clean, green power for PGE customers.
While the first phase of this large-scale wind project–located near Oregon’s ever-windy Columbia River Gorge–has been operational since 2008, the final phase of the project has increased the wind farm’s total installed capacity significantly, from 150 MW to 450 MW. This will allow PGE to meet another renewable energy mandate, their own: the utility’s current Integrated Resource Plan calls for renewable resources to make up approximately 9 percent of the company’s total retail load by the end of 2010.
“Biglow Canyon Wind Farm is an important component of PGE’s diverse portfolio of energy resources,” said Jim Piro, PGE president and CEO, in a statement. “PGE is proud to have completed one of the largest wind projects in the Pacific Northwest – constructed on time and under budget.” The $1 billion project is located on 25,000 acres near Wasco in Sherman County, Oregon.