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WEC Energy acquires 80% stake in 97-MW wind farm in South Dakota

WEC Energy Group Inc. acquired an 80% ownership stake in the 97-MW Coyote Ridge wind project in Brookings County, S.D., from Avangrid Inc.

WEC Energy's investment, which includes and substantially all of the project's tax benefits, totals about $145 million, the company said in a news release Jan. 8.

Currently under construction, the project will host 39 General Electric Co. wind turbines. Avangrid Renewables LLC will provide operations and maintenance services to the project upon its commissioning by the end of 2019 and will run the facility.

Alphabet Inc. subsidiary Google LLC holds a power purchase agreement for all of the energy produced at the plant.

Under new federal tax rules, the WEC Energy Group investment is expected to be eligible for 100% bonus depreciation, WEC Energy said. In a separate statement, Avangrid said it expects the wind project to produce more than $20 million in combined land lease payments to local landowners and local and state tax payments over its expected operating life.