When completed later this year, the wind farm will generate approximately 55 megawatts of electricity, enough power for over 14,000 households.
Pinnacle was jointly developed by US Wind Force and EME, which has acquired and now will build the project. The project represents a total investment of approximately $130 million and will become one of Mineral County's largest taxpayers with property tax payments of approximately $10.7 million over the next 25 years. The project has also established a Community Benefit Fund that will provide locally controlled financial resources for worthy community projects.
This project has come this far thanks to the partnership with the community," said David Friend, chairman and CEO of US Wind Force. "We appreciate the communitys broad support for the project.
"We are truly excited to see this project moving forward and putting local people to work," added Cindy Pyles, president of the Mineral County Commission.
"Pinnacle marks an important milestone for our wind energy program as our 30th project in 11 states," said Pedro Pizarro, president of Edison Mission Group EMG, the parent company of EME. "We look forward to being a corporate citizen of Mineral County for many years to come and thank the community and local officials for their support and welcome of our company to this area."
In addition to Pinnacle, EME has, for the past 20 years, operated a power generating facility in Grant Town, W.Va., which burns waste coal to produce electricity.
All of the electricity produced by Pinnacle will be sold under 20-year agreements with the University of Maryland System and the Maryland Department of General Services. NewPage Corporation, the largest coated paper manufacturer in North America, based on production capacity, partnered with US Wind Force on this project. Six of the turbines will be located on NewPage property near the companys Luke, Md., facility.
"NewPage is proud to partner strategically with US Wind Force. This partnership is an example of our commitment to support the growth of sustainable energy and is consistent with our goal to continuously explore renewable energy opportunities for our facilities," said David Bonistall, vice president, Environmental, Health and Safety, for NewPage.
As part of the project planning, US Wind Force established a Community Advisory Panel CAP to create an ongoing dialogue with community members from Keyser, New Creek, Piedmont, and Elk Garden. Members meet regularly to discuss the project and its progress. In addition to meeting with CAP members, US Wind Force has met frequently with local civic and service organizations in Mineral County and has conducted a number of project open houses.