Minnesota Power winds up turbine power

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Minnesota Power announced plans on Thursday to increase its wind power capacity by 50 percent. The Star Tribune reports the Duluth-based utility will build a $345 million, 200-megawatt expansion of its North Dakota wind farm.

With the addition, Minnesota Power expects to meet the requirement that 25 percent of its energy be generated from renewable sources 10 years ahead of schedule. The expansion will add 64 turbines to the 101 turbines it already has at the wind farm near Salem, N.D. Minnesota Power serves 143,000 customers, including iron mining companies.

It's the second wind announcement from a Minnesota utility in two weeks. Xcel Energy announced plans to significantly increase its wind generation. The company said its customers will save $180 million over 20 years as a result.

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