New Mexico’s largest wind farm is now online

Industry

Xcel Energy’s self-build 522-MW Sagamore Wind Project in eastern New Mexico, on the Texas border, is now online. It’s New Mexico’s largest single wind farm.

The Sagamore Wind Project was officially completed yesterday by Minneapolis-based utility holding company Xcel Energy. The wind farm consists of 240 wind turbines that can produce 522 megawatts. The turbines are 460 feet tall.

New Mexico’s largest wind farm has enough electricity to power 194,000 homes. It sits on 100,000 acres, and around 98% of that land will continue to be used to produce agriculture.

Construction of Sagamore began in fourth quarter 2019. The project will create 30-40 full-time operations jobs. Financial benefits include increased tax revenue for school districts and counties and $89 million in lease payments for 175 local landowners.

Xcel Energy, which provides energy to eight midwestern and western states, expects to provide 100% carbon-free energy to all customers by 2050.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports:

New Mexico has 32 wind projects producing 1,953 megawatts in the third quarter, ranking 15th in the nation among states, according to the state Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department.

New Mexico also ranks 12th with fourfold growth in annual wind generation from 2010-19, according to US Energy Information Administration’s Electricity Data Browser.

Xcel is the primary electricity provider in six Eastern New Mexico counties.

New Mexico passed an energy bill in March 2019 that set a goal of 100% carbon-free electricity by 2045.

New Mexico governor Michelle Lujan Grisham said yesterday at a news conference about Sagamore’s completion:

We [New Mexico] are going to meet and potentially exceed our clean energy goals in 2030, 2040, and beyond.

Photo: Xcel

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