OMAHA, Neb. — Independent energy company closed $158 million in commercial financing today for the Nobles 2 wind project, which is under construction in Nobles County in southwest Minnesota.
Tenaska has successfully developed approximately 10,500 megawatts (MW) of natural gas-fueled and renewable power projects. Including the Nobles 2 transaction, Tenaska has raised approximately $17.2 billion in capital through bank facilities, capital market transactions, corporate facilities and equity.
“This is Tenaska’s second wind financing in 2019 that has been well received by the lending community,” said Jay Frisbie, Tenaska senior vice president of finance. “This project is well positioned to meet the needs of our customer when it comes online in 2020 and for many, many years into the future.”
Associated Bank, BNP Paribas, CoBank, Credit Agricole and Helaba are providing the debt financing for the project.
The Nobles 2 wind farm is owned by Nobles 2 Power Partners, LLC, which is comprised of affiliates of Tenaska and ALLETE, Inc. ALLETE is an energy company based in Duluth. In addition to its electric utilities, Minnesota Power and Superior Water, Light and Power of Wisconsin, ALLETE owns ALLETE Clean Energy, based in Duluth; and BNI Energy in Bismarck, N.D.; and has an 8 percent equity interest in the American Transmission Co.
Construction of the 250-MW Nobles 2 wind farm, located near Wilmont in Nobles County, began in August. Vestas, an industry leader in sustainable energy solutions, is supplying 74 wind turbines and will provide maintenance services for the project. Mortenson, a premier builder and provider of energy and engineering services based in Minneapolis, is the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor.
Commercial operation is anticipated in 2020. When complete, the Nobles 2 wind farm will deliver power under a 20-year power purchase agreement with Minnesota Power, a utility division of ALLETE.
Construction and operation of the Nobles 2 wind farm is expected to boost the economy in southwest Minnesota. The project will create up to 230 jobs at peak construction and up to 15 full-time jobs when operational, in addition to providing opportunities for local businesses to provide goods and services for the project.
The wind farm is also anticipated to result in increased tax revenue of more than $1.1 million annually to local units of government, as well as diversify land use and provide stable income to landowners through lease payments.