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Mo. regulators approve permit for switch station to connect NextEra wind project

A TransourceEnergy LLC subsidiary received approval from Missouri regulators toown a switch station that will help interconnect the planned 200-MW wind project nowunder construction to the regional grid.

The switch station, estimated to cost $16.8 million, isnecessary to allow the wind-generated power from the project to move into theSouthwest Power PoolInc., according to Transource Missouri's that was filed withthe Missouri Public Service Commission on July 22.

The PSC on Oct. 5 approved Transource's permit applicationto own the switch station that will be in DeKalb County, Mo., about 70 milesnorth of Kansas City, according to an Oct. 5 that takes effect on Oct. 15.Commission staff in September recommended the application be approved. BecauseOsborn Wind Energy LLC, a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources LLC, is developing the windfarm and requesting interconnection, it will pay for the construction of thestation and turn it over to Transource after construction is complete, thepermit application said. (File No. EA-2016-0190)

Transource is a transmission development venture ofAmerican Electric Power Co.Inc. and Great PlainsEnergy Inc.

"There are no further permits needed from thecommission in order for the Osborn Wind Energy Center to start construction ofthe switch station," Natelle Dietrich, PSC staff director, said in an interviewon Oct. 12.

The switch station would interconnect the Osborn wind farmwith the Sibley-Nebraska City Project, a 345-kV transmission line expected tobegin operation by the end of this year. Transource will own the Missouriportion, extending about 135 miles from an existing substation adjacent to the461-MW Sibleycoal plant, owned by Great Plains subsidiary KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Co., to a newsubstation called Mullin Creek near Maryville, Mo., then into southeasternNebraska, running about 45 miles to the Omaha Public Power District's Nebraska City station.OPPD is building the Nebraska portion of the line and will own it.

Kansas CityPower & Light Co., also a Great Plains subsidiary, in Aprilsaid it wouldpurchase wind energy under 20-year power purchase agreements from the Osbornfacility and TradeWind EnergyInc.'s 300-MW Rock Creek Wind project in Atchison County, Mo.TradeWind expects to bring the project online in 2017, according to its website.