Pickens Walks Away from World's Largest Wind Farm  

Posted by Big Gav in ,

EcoGeek reports that T Boone Pickens' wind power project has been abandoned - Pickens Walks Away from World's Largest Wind Farm.

After months of delays due to financing difficulties, T. Boone Pickens is walking away from a plan to build the world's largest wind farm in the Texas Panhandle. While money played a large part in the decision, the nail in the coffin came from an announcement that $5 million worth of new transmission lines for wind energy in Texas were not going to be built anywhere near the planned site of the wind farm.

Pickens originally planned to build his own transmission lines as well, but tough economic times have scaled back his ambition.

The good news is that Pickens and his team still plan to develop smaller wind farms around the Midwest, including spots in Wisconsin, Oklahoma and Kansas, and Texas.

While Pickens is an unlikely eco-hero, we've been rooting for him to get these big projects up and running. We can only hope that these setbacks aren't permanent and we'll see the return of his large-scale wind energy plans in the near future.

3 comments

I think you need to check the accuracy of this.

The following day after this news piece surfaced Pickens gave an interview in which he stated that he was continuing with the wind farm and it would be built, just a couple years later than originally planned.

Apparently the slow down came from a combination the economic slowdown and problems (seemingly solved) with funding the transmission lines.

Oh - OK - thanks - hopefully that is true.

I couldn't find the interview (at least not in a quick search) you mention, but he is talking about investing in Canadian wind power.

http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/fp/Oilman+still+tilting+windmills/1708457/story.html

From a NPR interview. I believe the interview was the day after people started saying that Pickens had bailed....

Pickens tells Robert Siegel that tight credit markets and the absence of transmission lines, which would carry wind energy from the turbines to the grid, made the postponement necessary. But, he says, the turbines and financing will be available in 2011, and the transmission will be up by 2013.

"So, it'll all fit together," he says. "We'll just be a couple of years behind schedule."


http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106397688

Here's the NPR piece from the day before which cites an Associated Press article that says the farm isn't going to happen.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2009/07/t_boone_pickens_wind_farm_plan.html

Sounds to me that the big farm may not be as big, at least at first. Some of the turbines already purchased may be installed in other places where transmission is less problematic.

But it sounds like Pickens intends to build the original vision, just a bit slower. And it sounds like he intends to bring just as much generation to the grid within roughly the same time frame, just not all in the same place.

It makes sense to me. He's paid for the turbines and they seem to be on line for delivery. But makes no sense to install them where the power will be orphaned.

Put them where they can be used. Buy more to complete the larger farm when transmission issues are solved.

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