Dodge County Wind edges closer to construction

Published 6:27 pm Friday, February 17, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Solar farm coming to Adams

Commissioners received an update from NextEra officials on the current status of the company’s planned Dodge County Wind project during the Mower County Board of Commissioners meeting Tuesday.

The 259 megawatt project will include 79 wind turbines in Dodge County. While none of the turbines will be placed in Mower County, a transmission line will run through the northern part of the county to a Great River Energy-owned substation in Pleasant Valley Township.

Email newsletter signup

According to NextEra Energy Resources Director Danell Herzig, the line was originally meant to run into the Byron substation, but congestion was raising costs so the switch was made to Pleasant Valley.

The application for the project is currently under review with the Public Utility Commission.

Herzig told commissioners that NextEra is still hoping to start construction in 2024, but a delay in the overall schedule will likely push some of that work into 2025.

The reason for the delay is that the state requested an Advisory Task Force be formed to include counties and area communities more in the project.

“What they are really trying to accomplish with this is collaboration,” Herzig said.

Herzig said NextEra expects a final report by early May from the task force.

The project is expected to create $750,000 to $1 million in annual tax payments to Dodge County with over $50 million in direct landowner payments over 30 years.

It’s also estimated to generate $200 million in economic activity in the area during construction of the wind farm.

Herzig also touched on the Timberwolf Solar Project, a 100 megawatt project that will be built just east of Adams and that will run into Adams substation.

Construction for this project is expected to start in 2025 and will feature between $1.5 and $2 million in annual land payments to landowners with an estimated $500 to $1 million in annual property taxes to the county. It’s also expected to create between 150 to 200 jobs during the peak of construction.

A final application will be submitted to the Public Utility Commission in July of this year.