Southern California Edison Starts Construction on
the Nation's Largest Wind Transmission Project
Mar 7, 2008 - Business Wire
In the most recent demonstration of
its national leadership role in renewable and alternative
energy, Southern California Edison (SCE) has begun
construction of the largest wind transmission project
in the United States.
When all phases are developed, the
Tehachapi Renewable Transmission Project will include
a series of new and upgraded high-voltage transmission
lines capable of delivering 4,500 megawatts of electricity
from wind farms and other generating companies in
Northern Los Angeles and Eastern Kern counties.
The first three segments include the
following components: two new substations -- Windhub
and Highwind -- located near Mojave and Monolith;
a new, 25.6 mile, 500 kilovolt transmission line connecting
SCE's existing Antelope Substation with the new Windhub
Substation; a new, 9.6 mile, 220 kilovolt transmission
line connecting the Windhub Substation and the Highwind
Substation; a new, 21.0-mile, 500 kilovolt transmission
line connecting SCE's existing Antelope and Vincent
substations; and a new, 26.7-mile, 500 kilovolt transmission
line connecting SCE's existing Antelope and Pardee
substations. The new lines are expected to be operational
in early 2009.
"Southern California Edison is the nation's
leader in renewable and alternative energy, and we
are continually looking for ways to expand our renewables
portfolio," said Alan J. Fohrer, chairman and chief
executive officer of Southern California Edison, the
utility subsidiary of Edison International. "The Tehachapi
project is an example of the company finding a progressive
way to meet increased energy demands of our customers
and meet state officials' desires to enhance the state's
The Tehachapi project is the first major
transmission project in California being built specifically
to access multiple renewable generators in a remote
renewable-rich resource area. When complete, it will
be part of a comprehensive $1.8 billion program to
provide the high-voltage transmission infrastructure
necessary to interconnect and deliver the renewable
wind resources being developed in the Tehachapi Wind
Resource Area to California electricity customers.
Completing the Tehachapi project is
an important component to meeting California's renewable
"Construction of the Tehachapi project
will create the single largest power block of wind
energy in the United States," said Michael Peevey,
president of the California Public Utilities Commission
(CPUC). "Our action today represents a critical step
in alleviating the transmission constraints that have
limited our ability to access substantial wind resources
in the Tehachapi region."
Other phases of the project are in the
regulatory and approval stage. The project, if completed
in 2013 as proposed, would be capable of carrying
4,500 megawatts of electricity, enough energy to supply
nearly 3 million homes at peak output. One megawatt
is enough power to serve about 650 average homes at
a given point in time.
"The Tehachapi project not only will
facilitate the interconnection of new wind generation,
but also will improve grid reliability to help meet
the state's growing demand for electricity with renewable
energy," said Dian Grueneich, the lead CPUC commissioner
on the Tehachapi project.
In addition to bringing significant
wind energy resources to the California transmission
grid, the Tehachapi project will provide many other
meaningful benefits, including:
-- Improving the reliability of the
California transmission grid by enabling the expansion
of the transfer capability of "Path 26," one of the
state's most important north/south transmission corridors.
-- Serving the growth in energy demand
in the Antelope Valley.
-- Easing transmission constraints into
the Los Angeles basin.
The Tehachapi project is part of SCE's
five-year, $5 billion transmission expansion program
designed to ensure that Southern California has the
robust power delivery system needed by a growing region.
SCE is the nation's leading purchaser
of renewable energy. In 2006, SCE delivered about
13 billion kilowatt-hours of renewable energy, 17
percent of its total power deliveries -- enough renewable
energy to serve 1.8 million homes for an entire year.
Energy contracts signed by SCE from 2002 through 2007
account for approximately 4,200 megawatts of SCE's
renewable energy portfolio, the equivalent of about
four major power plants.
An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company,
Southern California Edison is the largest electric
utility in California, serving a population of more
than 13 million via 4.8 million customer accounts
in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central,
Coastal and Southern California.
SOURCE: Southern California Edison