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The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) and Wind on the Wires (WOW) filed a protest with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) opposing a proposal by the utility transmission system operator in the Midwest that, if approved, will discourage the development of wind resources in a region that has been termed “the Saudi Arabia of wind.”
The proposed change would nearly double the cost for a wind plant to connect to the power system in the Upper Midwest, potentially forcing many wind plant developers to pull the plug on tens of billions of dollars of investment they have planned for the region. Instead of broadly distributing the costs of transmission in a way that matches the broadly distributed benefits of building a stronger grid--such as improved reliability and reduced power prices--the proposal would assign virtually all those costs to the next generator attempting to connect to the grid.
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