NextEra backs out of controversial wind farm construction in western Oklahoma

After a fight with Oklahoma over wind farm encroachment of nearby military air bases, NextEra Energy announced it will not proceed with construction of two wind farms in western Oklahoma.

The 220-megawatt Minco V farm and the 250-Megawatt Crowder wind project were originally planned last year but were met with resistance from the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission and the Oklahoma Strategic Military Planning Commission. When lawsuits were threatened, Attorney General Mike Hunter intervened and directed negotiations for the past several months.

“We worked hard to find a solution,” said Bryan Garner, a spokesman for NextEra.

The company’s negotiations also included the U.S. Air Force and the Defense Department who claimed the additional wind farms would interfere in low-level aircraft training.

“We respect all their important missions and we respect the balance between national security and economic development and affordable clean energy. Unfortunately, we could not find a solution that satisfied all stakeholders,” said Garner.

About 90 turbines were involved in the proposed Minco V project in Caddo County. It was a $270 million project. The Crowder wind farm involved 100 turbines at a cost of $300 million.

NextEra’s announcement came a few weeks after Gov. Kevin Stitt signed a law requiring wind farm developers to follow procedures that meet approval of the Federal Aviation Administration and the Military Aviation and Installation Assurance Siting Clearinghouse.

%d bloggers like this: