Understanding Wind Power Utility Needs

Power utility companies may opt to own or operate wind generation but they are needed to deliver the end product to the consumers. The American Wind Energy Association wants to understand the needs of wind power utilities so that the AWEA will know how to help them.

Profiling the wind power utilities is not an easy task because they are of different sizes, structures, and operate in different regulatory environments. Some utilities are investor-owned companies that serve several states; while there are some owned by the municipality that serves a city or small community.

The common denominator that members of the AWEA share is their concern about rate increases. Their goal is to provide reliable energy at an affordable rate. The increase of generation price is due to building new generation plants or retiring the old ones.

Utilities that generate wind energy have to be balanced in their total generation mix. The balancing service will add additional cost to the transmission charge. Then there’s the current transmission capacity, which can’t meet the modern requirements.

To deliver the final product to the consumers, power utilities have to tackle several tasks such as transmission planning, construction of new transmission lines, and permitting. The AWEA knows the challenges these companies are facing and it is there to help them through it.

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