It has also signed an option agreement to acquire a fourth wind energy facility in Pennsylvania in mid-2015.
Under the agreement, ALLETE Clean Energy would acquire AES' position in operating wind energy projects in Lake Benton, Minnesota ,Storm Lake, Iowa ,and Condon, Oregon, with a total output of 231 MW for US$27 million. All three wind farms to be acquired have power purchase agreements in place for their entire electric output. The project sites enjoy favourable wind resources in their respective areas, are supported by local communities, and are currently staffed by approximately 40 technicians.
Pursuant to the option agreement, ALLETE Clean Energy will have an option to acquire the 101MW Armenia Mountain, Pennsylvania wind farm. That project became operational in 2009 and has two long-term power purchase agreements in place. It is located in the PJM electricity market area near the Pennsylvania-New York border.
"This acquisition is right in line with our strategy of growing energy-centric earnings streams that expand our customer base and complement our traditional utility operations," said Alan R Hodnik, chairman, president and CEO of ALLETE. "It also supports our belief that cleaner energy sources will become increasingly valuable as we participate in our nation's energy evolution. By 2015, ALLETE and its business subsidiaries may have nearly 850MW of installed wind generation."