San Diego-based EDF Renewable Energy has acquired a 96 percent stake in the planned 175-megawatt Pilot Hill Wind Project, which has a 20-year power-purchase agreement with Microsoft Corp., EDF announced.
EDF is acquiring the stake from Orion Energy Group LLC and Vision Energy LLC.
Pilot Hill Wind Project, located 60 miles southwest of Chicago, in Kankakee and Iroquois counties, will consist of wind turbines supplied by General Electric and Vestas.
The wind project is situated on the same electric grid that powers Microsoft’s Chicago-area datacenter. Construction on site is to commence shortly with commercial operation anticipated during first quarter 2015.
“EDF Renewable Energy is pleased to have the opportunity to partner with Microsoft on the Pilot Hill Wind Project, as well as to have closed our first transaction with Orion and Vision Energy,” said Ryan Pfaff, executive vice president for EDF Renewable.
EDF pointed to Microsoft’s participation as an example of “blue chip” organizations playing a more active role in securing clean energy and reducing their carbon footprint.
“The Pilot Hill Wind Project is important to Microsoft because it helps solidify our commitment to taking significant action to shape our energy future by developing clean, low-cost sources to meet our energy needs,” said Brian Janous, director of energy strategy for Microsoft.