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Enel, GE Soar to New Heights at Texas Wind Farm with Tallest Turbine Towers in US, Also Partner on Kansas Wind Project

Jan 10, 2008 - BusinessWeek

SNYDER, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Enel SpA, through its subsidiary Enel North America, Inc., announced today the completion of a wind farm in Texas with the tallest utility-scale wind turbines in the United States as well as investments by an affiliate of GE Energy Financial Services, the energy investing unit of GE (NYSE: GE - News).

Enel SpA has completed a wind farm in Texas with the tallest utility-scale wind turbines in the United States, featuring an investment by an affiliate of GE Energy Financial Services. Shown here are several of the record-breaking 345-foot-tall towers at the Snyder Wind project in Scurry County. (Photo: Business Wire)

The Snyder Wind project in Scurry County, Texas, between Abilene and Lubbock, comprises 21 Vestas V90 3.0 megawatt wind turbines mounted on towers measuring a record-breaking 345 feet. Construction was completed in December 2007.

“The Snyder project takes both wind and Enel to new heights,” said Toni Volpe, Enel North America CEO. “The project represents the first of several wind farms slated to come online in the next 12 months which will more than triple Enel North America’s wind capacity by the end of 2008. Enel is pleased to add this innovative project to its global renewable energy portfolio.”

GE Energy Financial Services affiliates also intend to help Enel grow by investing in a 101-megawatt project at Smoky Hills, Kansas. The investment in the Snyder and Smoky Hills projects marks the first transaction by affiliates of GE Energy Financial Services with Enel in wind power. Financial details were not disclosed.

“Enel is a global leader, and we’re very enthusiastic about the opportunity to help it grow in the US market," said Kevin Walsh, Managing Director and leader of renewable energy at GE Energy Financial Services.

The Snyder project – where the turbine towers are so tall because wind conditions are best at that height -- will produce energy sufficient to power more than 12,000 average Texas homes annually. Snyder Wind will be operated and maintained by Enel North America, Inc. Power will be sold into the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). Snyder and Fortis Energy Marketing & Trading, a division of Fortis Merchant Banking, have entered into an approximately 1.1 million megawatt-hour, ten-year fixed-price hedge agreement that will provide revenue stability and accommodate wind seasonality. The Smoky Hills, Kansas Wind project, in Ellsworth and Lincoln counties, 140 miles west of Topeka, will employ 56 Vestas V80 1.8-megawatt wind turbines. The project, developed by TradeWind Energy LLC and purchased by Enel in 2007, is expected to be completed early this year.

The Smoky Hills project will produce energy sufficient to power more than 37,000 average Kansas homes annually. Power generated by Smoky Hills will be sold through power purchase agreements with Sunflower Electric Power Corporation, Kansas City Board of Public Utilities and Midwest Energy Inc.

Enel purchased the interest and rights to Snyder in October 2006 from Windkraft Nord USA, Inc (WKN). As the turn-key developer of the project, WKN procured the turbines and remained involved in Snyder as the construction manager. “I am very excited that the first project WKN developed in the U.S. has come online. Snyder is probably the most modern wind project in North America, and we are pleased to have worked together with Enel to bring it to its successful completion,” says Florian Zerhusen, CEO of WKN.

With these two investments, GE Energy Financial Services holds equity in 81 wind farms worldwide, with a capacity to produce more than 3,000 megawatts of electricity.

The Snyder Wind and Smoky Hills investments reinforce GE’s ecomagination initiative, a program to help its customers meet their environmental challenges while expanding its own portfolio of cleaner energy products.

About GE Energy Financial Services

GE Energy Financial Services’ 350 experts invest globally with a long-term view, backed by the best of GE’s technical know-how and financial strength, across the capital spectrum and the energy and water industries, to help their customers and GE grow. With $16 billion in assets, GE Energy Financial Services, based in Stamford, Connecticut, invests more than $5 billion annually in two of the world’s most capital-intensive industries, energy and water. In renewable energy, GE Energy Financial Services is growing its portfolio of more than $2 billion in assets in wind, solar, biomass, hydro and geothermal power. For more information, visit

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE - News) is Imagination at Work -- a diversified technology, media and financial services company focused on solving some of the world’s toughest problems. With products and services ranging from aircraft engines, power generation, water processing and security technology to medical imaging, business and consumer financing, media content and advanced materials, GE serves customers in more than 100 countries and employs more than 300,000 people worldwide. For more information, visit

About Enel

Enel is Europe's second-largest power company by installed capacity. It produces, distributes and sells electricity and gas across Europe, North America and Latin America. With 19,000 MW using renewable energy resources (hydro, geothermal, wind, solar and biomass) across the world, Enel is a world leader in the sector. In December 2006, Enel announced a 4.1 billion euro investment plan in renewable energy. For more information, visit

About Enel North America, Inc.

Enel North America, Inc. is a leading owner and operator of renewable energy plants in North America, with projects operating and under development in 20 U.S. States and three Canadian Provinces. Enel North America owns and operates over 70 projects with an installed capacity of 470 MW powered by renewable hydropower, wind, geothermal and biomass energy. Enel North America is constructing the 27 MW St. Lawrence Wind Project in Newfoundland, Canada, in addition to several geothermal projects in Nevada, Utah and California. The company is headquartered in Andover, Massachusetts. For more information, visit

Editor’s Note:

Caption for accompanying photo: Enel SpA has completed a wind farm in Texas with the tallest utility-scale wind turbines in the United States, featuring an investment by an affiliate of GE Energy Financial Services. Shown here are several of the record-breaking 345-foot-tall towers at the Snyder Wind project in Scurry County.

TV news B-roll of a wind farm, from general archives, is available at



Updated: 2016/06/30

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