BEATRICE – The Beatrice Board of Public Works is recommending the City of Beatrice not pursue a wind energy project with Bluestem Energy Solutions, of Omaha. The BPW and City of Beatrice are working with the company to establish a natural gas-fired electric generating facility, that would be located at the Gage County Industrial Park.
Beatrice Mayor Stan Wirth says a small-scale wind farm, with one tower, possibly growing to three turbines, has been under consideration.
:25 “economy of scale”
Gage and Jefferson Counties are the location of the Steele Flats Wind Farm, which is a much larger operation. The Florida-based NextEra Energy Resources wind farm includes 32 wind turbines in southeast Jefferson County and 12 more in southwest Gage County.
Wirth says the natural gas facility proposal is still on the table, and is scheduled to come before the Nebraska Power Review board, on December 14th.
This year, the Beatrice Board of Public Works decided to contract with AEP Energy Partners of Ohio, after the city’s current contract with Nebraska Public Power District expires.
:15 “from it”
Wirth says landowner objections to the small wind energy proposal east of Beatrice, did not factor into the recommendation not to pursue the project.
Should the power review board reject Bluestem’s application for the gas-fired facility, the City of Beatrice would acquire additional electric generating capacity on the open market.