FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — According to a press release, the 998-megawatt Traverse Wind Energy Center, the largest single wind farm built at one time in North America, is now providing clean energy to Southwestern Electric Power Co. customers in Louisiana and Arkansas.
Traverse is the third and final wind project in the North Central Energy Facilities (NCEF) in Oklahoma that will provide 1,484 MW of clean energy—enough to power 440,000 homes. SWEPCO owns 54.5%, or approximately 809 MW, of the NCEF project.
According to the press release, these wind facilities are expected to save SWEPCO customers an estimated $2 billion in electricity costs over the next 30 years.
We are excited to have the final piece of the North Central Energy Facilities project in place to bring even more clean and affordable energy to customers in Arkansas and Louisiana. This wind energy helps customers meet their own renewable energy and sustainability goals and makes the communities we serve in Louisiana and Arkansas more competitive for economic development. Over the next 20 years, SWEPCO’s diverse energy resource mix will include significantly more wind and solar. This transition puts us further along the path to achieve AEP’s goal of net zero carbon dioxide emissions by 2050.Malcolm Smoak, SWEPCO president and chief operating officer
In addition to Traverse, the NCEF project includes the 199-MW Sundance wind farm, which began commercial operation in April 2021, and the 287-MW Maverick wind farm, which began commercial operation in September 2021. SWEPCO announced in early February plans to add 72.5 MW of solar energy through a power purchase agreement with the proposed Rocking R Solar project in Northwest Louisiana.
In addition to the renewable energy serving all Louisiana and Arkansas customers, customers will also have the option to purchase Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) through the SWEPCO Renewable Energy Choice program. Proceeds from the REC sales flow back into fuel cost savings for the benefit of all Louisiana and Arkansas customers.