Oklahoma Gets Another Big Wind Farm

How’s the song go? “Oklahoma, where the wind comes sweepin’ down the plain.” Apparently, Rodgers and Hammerstein had it right, as wind power plants continue to pop up in the state. Coming soon: the Dempsey Ridge Wind Farm, in Roger Mills County. The Spanish energy developer Acciona Energy announced it had begun work on the project, which will become its sixth U.S. wind farm and third in Oklahoma.

Dempsey Ridge is a mere 15 miles west of Acciona’s 123-megawatt (MW) Red Hills Wind Farm, which began producing power in June 2009. Acciona said the 132-MW capacity Dempsey Ridge plant should take about a year to build and will supply enough power for 46,000 homes in Oklahoma and surrounding states.

Acciona wind power plant, Oklahoma

image via Acciona Energy

“Oklahoma is a state that understands energy and has embraced wind as a plentiful and lucrative resource for the future,” said Dan Foley, chief development officer, Acciana Energy North America. “Oklahoma already ranks in the top 10 U.S. states for wind energy potential and this project is another step in the direction of realizing that potential.”

While Acciona is based in Spain, the company engineers and assembles wind turbines in the United States, at a plant it opened in West Branch, Iowa, in 2007.

Pete Danko is a writer and editor based in Portland, Oregon. His work has appeared in Breaking Energy, National Geographic's Energy Blog, The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and elsewhere.