MGE Building New Wind Farm
Saratoga wind farm will be MGE's largest to date.
In November, state regulators approved MGE's plan to own and operate the 66-megawatt (MW) wind farm near Saratoga, Iowa, about 200 miles west of Madison. Once construction is complete, the Saratoga Wind Farm will generate enough energy to power about 47,000 average homes. It will be MGE's largest wind farm to date.
Iowa is known for its strong winds, and the 8,300-acre site is close to an existing substation and transmission lines to carry the power. The large parcel will host 33 turbines and will be surrounded by farmland, most of which will stay in production.
MGE owns another wind farm in Iowa, the Top of Iowa 3 Wind Farm, which began generating electricity in 2008. The Saratoga Wind Farm will feature turbines that are 100 feet taller. Wind turbine technology has advanced throughout the last decade, producing turbines that generate energy more efficiently and cost effectively.
30% renewables by 2030
Saratoga is a cost-effective, clean energy project for powering Madison-area homes and businesses for years to come. It also advances MGE's Energy 2030 framework.
Under Energy 2030, MGE will transition to 30% renewable energy by 2030 and 25% by 2025. The Saratoga Wind Farm is one of a number of steps in MGE's ongoing transition toward cleaner energy.
In January 2017, our Shared Solar pilot project became operational. The 500-kilowatt project in partnership with the City of Middleton offers residential customers the opportunity to purchase locally generated solar energy. We continue to seek opportunities for additional Shared Solar projects.
And, in 2016, we reached an agreement to reduce our minority ownership share in the coal-fired Columbia Energy Center in Portage, Wis., as part of our pledged and ongoing transition away from coal.