Bechtel joint venture picked to build 115MW wind farm in West Virgina

Clearway Energy Group has selected the Bechtel-Reed & Reed Joint Venture to build its 115MW Black Rock onshore wind farm in West Virginia.

Spanning Grant and Mineral counties with 23 turbines, the farm will generate enough energy to power 34,000 homes, and it boosts the state’s wind generating capacity by nearly 15%, Bechtel said.

Siemens-Gamesa will supply its SG 5.0-145 turbines set atop 107.5-metre-tall towers.

The project will create around 200 jobs in the area during construction, with several permanent jobs when operational. Once the wind farm is active, currently scheduled for late 2021, it will save 298,500 metric tons of CO2 emissions.

Clearway said the farm would make it one of the biggest taxpayers in Grant and Mineral counties: it will pay $5.7m in property taxes and $9m in Business & Occupation taxes to West Virginia over the life of the project.

Clearway has also established the Black Rock Community Benefit Fund, which will donate $50,000 to local nonprofits every year throughout the project’s lifespan.

"West Virginia continues to support the diversification of our state’s economy and we are here to support this wonderful project," said West Virginia Secretary of Commerce Ed Gaunch. "We are delighted to see Clearway deepen its roots in the Mountain State."

Chris Fox, Vice President of Construction at Clearway Energy Group, said: "This represents Clearway’s second renewable project in West Virginia, and provides a great opportunity for us to add construction jobs and permanent positions to our existing workforce in the state. Black Rock represents an important and growing sector of West Virginia’s economy and we are proud to help drive that growth."

Kelvin Sims, Bechtel’s Infrastructure general manager for the Americas said: "Our customers are setting ambitious targets to decarbonise energy systems, and we’re excited to support them in their journey to net-zero."

Image: For illustration, a wind farm in California (Tom Brewster Photography/CC BY 2.0)

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