EDF Renewable Energy has closed financing of the 175–megawatt Pilot Hill wind project located in Kankakee and Iroquois Counties in Illinois, US.
Structured equity financing was provided by GE Energy Financial Services and MetLife Inc. The wind farm, which has achieved commercial operations and is located about 60 miles southwest of Chicago, will power 100% of the energy needs of Microsoft Corp.’s Chicago data center. Microsoft has committed to purchase the output under a 20-year power purchase agreement.
“Pilot Hill serves as another example of EDF Renewable Energy’s strategy to develop renewable energy projects with first tier equipment suppliers and contractors, and then invite the investment from longstanding financial partners,” said Jim Peters, Vice President, Project Finance for EDF Renewable Energy.“EDF RE will manage the wind project and bring our expertise in operations and maintenance through EDF Renewable Services to optimize long-term investment profitability.”
“Investing in Pilot Hill contributes to the growth of EDF Renewable Energy, an important worldwide GE customer, builds on strong commercial interest in the renewable energy sector, and helps Microsoft meet its environmental goals,” said Kevin Walsh, managing director and head of renewable energy at GE Energy Financial Services.
The project comprises 91 sets of GE 1.7-100 and 12 GE 1.85-87 wind turbines. GE Energy Financial Services holds a portfolio of approximately 14 gigawatts of wind power projects in operation or under construction and plans to continue to invest over $1 billion annually in renewable energy projects worldwide, including in projects that utilize GE’s wind turbine technology.