Xcel Energy plans wind power expansionby Mark Steil, Minnesota Public Radio
Xcel Energy will invest almost $1 billion in wind farms over the next three years. Xcel plans to build its first-ever North Dakota facility, as well as a new wind farm in Nobles County in southwest Minnesota.
Xcel's Mark Stoering says together the projects will generate enough electricity to power about 110,000 homes. The Minnesota wind farm should be operational in two years, the North Dakota facility will go online in 2011.
Xcel is the nation's largest wind power provider. The new projects will boost its wind energy output by more than 10 percent.
The new wind farms are part of the company's efforts to meet state renewable energy requirements. By 2020, the state has mandated that 25 percent of Xcel's Minnesota electricity must come from wind power.