Google Puts $100M into Oregon Wind Farm

4/18/11

Continuing its run of massive alternative-energy investments, Mountain View, CA-based Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) said in a blog post today that it has invested roughly $100 million in the Shepherds Flat wind farm project under construction south of the Columbia River near Arlington, OR. Developer Caithness Energy, which is headquartered in New York, hopes the facility will produce 845 megawatts of electricity once it’s completed in 2012. Southern California Edison has already contracted to buy the electricity. Google recently invested $168 million in BrightSource Energy’s Ivanpah solar concentrator project in California’s Mojave Desert, bringing its total clean energy investments to more than $350 million. The company said the Shepherds Flat project “is exciting to us not only because of its size and scale, but also because it uses advanced technology…This will be the first commercial wind farm in the U.S. to deploy, at scale, turbines that use permanent magnet generators—tech-speak for evolutionary turbine technology that will improve efficiency, reliability and grid connection capabilities.”

Wade Roush is a contributing editor at Xconomy. Follow @

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