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June 22, 2010 05:49 PM

Day County Wind Farm Dedicated

Day County, SD

The power of the wind is helping power even more homes in KELOLAND. Dozens of new wind turbines in Day County are now turning out more renewable energy.

The wind turbines now standing tall in Day County can produce enough electricity to power about 25,000 homes.

"It's a new experience; we're getting used to the wind towers," Alan Townsend said. "It's something we're going to have to work with, but I'm very happy to have them up there."

Townsend has 12 of NextEra Energy's new 66 towers on his land, towers that went up even faster than anticipated. The project, which could have taken years to develop, was done in just eight months.

"This project is happening because thousands of people have spent their time, money and extra effort over many years to make sure that wind power could be successful," Gov. Mike Rounds said.

And the difference they'll make by creating energy from the wind will last much longer.

"We are turning something that can be terribly destructive into something that can be wonderfully good," Rounds said.

This is NextEra Energy's third wind farm in South Dakota. And according to what company leaders said during its dedication Tuesday, this won’t be its last.

"I'm very excited. We're doing our part on producing clean energy and I think it's something South Dakota's really going to have to look into the next few years," Townsend said.

Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Western Area Power Administration and East River Electric Power Cooperative also worked with NextEra to make the project a reality.  It brought six new permanent jobs to the state.

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