Fact Sheet

Tri-State Wind Farm
Gibson & Posey Counties
Fact Sheet

ABOUT RWE:

RWE is a German-based company that recently acquired E.ON’s North American operations in October 2019 – including its entire portfolio of wind and solar energy projects. It has a strong presence in the Midwest, with its North American headquarters in Chicago and investments of more than $1 billion across the region and more than $7 billion across the United States.

PROPOSED GIBSON-POSEY PROJECT:

    • Since 2017, RWE has been developing the Gibson Central and Gibson West wind energy projects in Gibson and Posey Counties.
    • Wind studies have been underway for the past 18 months.

 

Anticipated timeline:

  • RWE expects to have enough land under lease to fully develop the project by the first quarter of 2020.
  • Turbine layout / placement is expected in early 2020.
  • Q4 2020: Construction begins.
  • Q4 2021: Project is operational. Gibson and Posey Counties see major revenue.

 

Land use:

  • The development site is primarily agricultural, consisting of corn and soybeans. The project site encompasses approximately 28,000 acres (11,000 acres in Gibson Central, and 17,000 acres in the Gibson West / Posey North areas).
  • RWE has 194 lease agreements with 333+ signees / leaseholders and project supporters.

 

Power:

  • 400 megawatts of clean, inexpensive, homegrown energy from 72 to 142 turbines – enough to power more than 90,000 Indiana homes every year.
  • Proposed completion in 2021 with an operational life of nearly 30 years.

 

Estimated economic boost for the community (#s based on currently proposed size of project):

  • The project represents an overall investment of approximately $600 million in the community.
  • Up to 400 construction jobs during the 12-month construction phase of the project. RWE expects to employ local labor whenever possible to further benefit the community.
  • The project will create up to 25 full-time jobs.
  • The project will provide approximately $89 million in tax revenues for local government, schools, and public safety departments over its projected 30-year operational life.
  • The project will yield more than $50 million in payments to lease holders. Much of this money will be spent locally, generating further economic activity in the community. It will also provide reliable income and much needed stability for family farmers in the area.
  • Miles of local roads will be upgraded to meet the logistical needs for construction and operation of the wind farm AT NO COST TO TAXPAYERS.

 

Local business & labor support

Tri-State Wind project is enthusiastically supported by organizations that represent businesses, workers and the broader community in Posey & Gibson Counties, including:

  • Economic Development Coalition of Southwest Indiana.
  • Laborers International Union Local 561.
  • The Isaiah 1:17 Project.
  • Sierra Club, Hoosier Chapter.
  • International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 16.

 

Concerns:

CONCERN
HOW RWE IS ADDRESSING
Setback distance We design, build, and operate our projects with safety as our number one priority. All turbines will be setback in accordance with local zoning ordinances (our recommended setback distances to the APC are 1,500 feet from homes and 1.1x the turbine height from property lines) to ensure compliance with the law and public safety. In areas where there isn’t zoning, we still build safe setback distances into our projects.
Turbine Sound The project will be designed to meet the specifications of local zoning ordinances. Wind turbines are generally very quiet, with their sound produced at about the same level as a modern refrigerator.
Shadow flicker We carefully design our projects to minimize the incidence of shadow flicker for surrounding houses / residents. We position the turbines to help make sure that flicker only happens for a few minutes a few days of out of the year when the sun is at just the right angle, and will be compliant with local zoning ordinances.
Impact on property values There is no peer-reviewed evidence that wind turbines lower property values in communities where wind farms exist. In fact, many communities actually see property values around wind farms go up – which makes sense considering the additional millions of dollars in tax revenue those communities have as a result of the wind farm.
Medical access helicopter The wind farm will be designed so as to not have any impact on medical access helicopter operations.
Decommissioning concerns All of our lease agreements include decommissioning provisions to ensure proper removal, salvage of the components, and restoration of the land when the project reaches the end of its useful life.
NOAA Doppler weather radar We have committed publicly to not building any turbines in the NWS-designated no-build zone around the Doppler weather radar station. We are working with NWS, NOAA, and will submit our site design for review by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration as part of the rigorous federal permitting process we have to go through. We will design and operate the project to mitigate potential impacts on the Doppler radar from turbines in the NWS-designated mitigation and consultation zones.

EXAMPLE OF BENEFITS INDIANA’S TIPTON COUNTY RECEIVED FROM WINDFARM:

Project Economic Impact from Wildcat Windfarm*:

  • RWE’s Wildcat project was completed in 2012 in Tipton and Madison Counties. Its 112 GE 1.6 megawatt turbines produce 200 MW of power and have generated millions in revenue and landowner payments for the area, helping to sustain and boost the local economy.
  • Tipton County has received more than $3.3 million in tax revenues from the windfarm since 2012. It will receive $567,369 just in 2019.
  • The wind farm has a long-term, stabilizing influence on revenues that support the county budget.
  • Property taxes are lower for EVERY property owner.
  • RWE upgraded over 40 miles of roads at no cost to the county, which won’t need much maintenance or repair for many years – saving the county even more expense.
  • Farmers can use the access roads to stage their equipment for planting and harvesting; a much safer and cleaner alternative to parking along the road.
  • Over 500 landowners with turbines and leases are receiving taxable, steady income for 30 years.

* (Information provided by Tipton County Assessor Gregg Townsend.)

ABOUT RWE REWNEWABLES:

  • One of the nation’s largest renewable energy companies, RWE Renewables has built and operates 23 wind farms across the U.S., including four wind farms in the Midwest, keeping more than 2,200 turbines spinning to generate low-cost, homegrown electricity.
  • With its North American headquarters in Chicago, RWE has invested over $7 billion in communities across the U.S. and more than $1 billion throughout the Midwest.
  • RWE began working with Gibson and Posey Counties in 2017 to explore bringing the benefits of a wind project to the area, and found strong support from local landowners. In the years since, we have remained committed to making a project in Gibson and Posey Counties a reality.
  • An owner-operator for nearly all of its projects, RWE has developed a reputation for being a committed, engaged, and honest community partner and we hope to be able to do the same for both Gibson and Posey County.

KEY RWE DISTINCTIONS:

  • Owner-operators – Unlike some developers, RWE typically stays deeply involved with each project from the start and for years to come. It identifies a site, works with the community to explain the benefits and address concerns, builds the project, and develops a presence to operate the project for its life (25-30+ years). RWE works hard to become part of the communities that host its projects.
  • Good stewards of the land – RWE commits to restoring the land as it was prior to construction. In fact, RWE was the first wind-energy company to sign an Agricultural Impact Mitigation Agreement (AIMA) in neighboring Illinois. (https://www2.illinois.gov/sites/agr/Resources/AIMA/Pages/default.aspx).
  • Large, stable company – RWE has a strong track record and the resources & capital to get projects built.
    • RWE ranks #5 for Top 10 Developers of New U.S. Wind Capacity Installed 2017**
    • RWE ranks #5 in the U.S. relative to Total Wind Power Capacity Ownership by Market Share**
    • In 2017, RWE ranked #3 in the U.S. relative to Total Installed Wind Power Capacity Ownership by Market Share**
    • RWE built & operates the 4th-largest wind farm project in the U.S., Roscoe Wind Farm in Texas: 782MW & 627 turbines

(From American Wind Energy Association’s 2017 report.)

CONTACTS:

“If RWE were to come here today and say they’d like to put another wind turbine on my farm, I would say go for it. They’ve been very easy to work with.”

Greg Merida – Tipton County, Indiana