Acquisition helps generate wind power into electricity
Siemens, a German energy engineering firm and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, a Danish fund specializing in renewables, has announced that they have purchased the SOO Green Renewable Rail. The two companies have signed on to a 2,100-megawatt transmission project to bring renewable generation from Iowa to Illinois. It can ship wind power from Minnesota and Dakotas, which are connected to Iowa on the Midcontinent Independent System Operator grid. SOO Green’s developer, Direct Connect Development Company, hopes to complete this project by 2025.
Building a transmission line by the underground approach
The 2100 megawatt transmission mission which will deliver renewable technology from Iowa to Illinois is a 349-mile route which runs from Mason Metropolis, in Iowa wind nation, to a substation in Plano, Illinois. The SOO Green Renewable Rail could use high-voltage DC cables buried underground on a current railroad right-of-way which is similar to its method of the buildout of fiber optic networks. These high voltage DC equipment would be provided by Siemens which would help the SOO Green Renewable Rail generate wind power from Iowa to Illinois. Along with that, it would be the only way to avoid resistance from locals. The reason for resistance was that previously promises of laying underground wires couldn’t save the Northern Pass project, which aimed to bring hydropower from Quebec to Massachusetts via the scenic White Mountains of New Hampshire.
Setting an example to gain approvals for clean energy infrastructure
SOO Green could set a new example on how it could gain approval from the authorities and local communities for clean energy infrastructure. The developer’s strategy could. restructure the permissions needed for the project. The developer’s utilization of enhanced transmission capacity makes a highly renewable grid effective by shifting the generation of electricity from the more productive areas to the less sunny and windy parts. Along with this, the 2100 megawatt transmission line is crucial to achieving a mostly carbon-free grid. Besides that, It needs to be considered that the cost incurred for laying underground wires would be twice as expensive as overhead construction.
Wade Schauer, America’s Research Director at Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewable, stated while referring to the underground approach “It is expensive, but that might be one of the only ways you can get big transmission projects done in the U.S. anymore,”