Set on a 36,000-acre plot in South Dakota and comprising of 108 1.5MW wind turbines, the Crow Lake Wind Farm displaces fossil fuel-generated energy, meeting growing demands with clean energy and helping drive a low carbon future for the mid-west. In addition to generating clean energy, the project is building the next generation-in-energy workforce.
American wind power supports more than 120,000 jobs. Mitchell Technical College, located in Mitchell, South Dakota, created a Wind Turbine Technology program in 2009 to give local students a new career option. The program teaches students how to meet the workforce challenges of the wind industry and provides a fast track to these high-demand, well-paying jobs. The college received a generous donation of a wind turbine from NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, the Crow Lake Wind Farm owner and operator, to provide their students with hands-on training.
At full capacity, the wind farm project’s total installed capacity will be approximately 162 MW. Since 1 MW serves around 800 homes, this project will eventually serve about 129,000 homes with clean energy.
The Crow Lake Wind Farm yields many benefits to the local community. Residents involved in the project have taken the opportunity to gain ownership of their energy production and ensure that jobs and taxes stay in the area. Local economic development has also received a boost from the distribution of payments across landowners within the vicinity of the project.