GE invests in Enel's Buffalo Dunes wind farm in Kansas

April 8 Mon Apr 8, 2013 1:09pm EDT

April 8 (Reuters) - General Electric Co will provide capital and technology for the 250-megawatt (MW) Buffalo Dunes wind farm in Kansas being built by a unit of Italian renewable power company Enel Green Power SpA, GE said in a release on Monday.

Enel Green, a subsidiary of Italian power company Enel SpA , said in a separate release that GE's GE Energy Financial Services unit will invest about $40 million to buy a 51 percent stake in the wind project.

Enel Green's North American unit will maintain the remaining 49 percent stake in the project with the option to increase its position to 75 percent in 2013 or 2014, and will serve as project manager, GE said.

Buffalo Dunes is under construction in Finney, Grant and Haskell Counties in southwest Kansas and will cost about $370 million to build, Enel Green said.

GE Energy Financial told Reuters it would invest up to $230 million toward the project.

In addition to the capital, GE said it will supply 135 wind turbines and provide operations and maintenance for the wind farm after completion.

Alabama Power Co, a unit of U.S. power company Southern Co , will buy most of the electricity from the wind farm under a 20-year agreement.

GE and Enel have also invested together in other U.S. wind farms, including the 235-MW Chisholm View in Oklahoma, the 200-MW Prairie Rose in Minnesota, the 101-MW Smoky Hills in Kansas and the 63-MW Snyder in Texas.

RES Americas is managing the Buffalo Dunes construction, wich is expected to be completed by December, GE said.

The project is expected to employ 150 construction workers, create 15 permanent jobs and generate enough electricity to power 65,000 homes, GE said.

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