Wind Farm Planned Near Pittsfield

By Benjamin Cox on March 11, 2021 at 2:39pm

West Central Illinois is set to get another major wind turbine farm.

Prairie Power has announced it is working in cooperation with Illinois Winds, LLC, a subsidiary of PowerWorks to create a 16-turbine wind farm near Pittsfield. The project is called the Panther Creek Wind project. It is expected to produce approximately 44 milliwatts of power.

The Idaho-based Power Works currently owns 3 other projects in Idaho, Oklahoma, and Missouri. Over the past two decades, they owned and operated 4 wind farms in California totaling 800 wind turbines.

The Panther Creek Wind project is set to host 16 turbines with construction expected to begin in mid-2022. Prairie Power is set to purchase 100% of the power from the project. Prairie Power President & CEO Eric Hobbie says it’s excited to provide the carbon-free power to its 10 rural electric cooperatives across Central Illinois.

Illinois Winds President Rick Koebbe says the project will help the State of Illinois reach the state’s mandated goal of 25 percent renewable energy by 2025-2026 and Governor J.B. Pritzker’s goal of 100% renewable energy by 2050.

Prairie Power produces and supplies wholesale electricity to ten electric distribution cooperatives in central Illinois and provides retail electric service to approximately 78,000 members within their local service territories. Illinois Electric Cooperative in Winchester is part of Prairie Power and provides electricity to customers in Scott, Morgan, Greene, Pike, and Calhoun counties.

Illinois Electric Cooperative Manager Randy Long told the Journal-Courier that the local cooperative will partner the wind project with their current solar farm south of Winchester to help continue to reach the state’s renewable energy goals.

In all, the energy produced from the Pittsfield-based wind farm will allegedly help power approximately 20,000 homes across Prairie Power’s footprint.