Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Transmission: Southwest Power Pool Gives Preliminary Approval for $1.3 Billion in 'Priority Projects' (BGC; PWR)

Neither Quanta Services (PWR) or General Cable (BGC) would be named at this early stage of the approval process for these projects but are almost certain to be beneficiaries of what appears to be one of the larger packages of high-voltage power lines I've seen.
Quanta specializes in the engineering while General Cable specializes in, well, cable.

As the CEP's Dr. Hazlett emailed a couple weeks ago:
...According to a source in the know at the recent 2009 KS Wind conference, "Kansas has pretty much maxxed out its available transmission for large wind farms until more lines get built. One major 345 line is underway and will be built by 2012, and hopefully another high voltage line of 765 or 345 will be approved by January and maybe built by 2014. However, in the meantime, there's lots of transmission congestion and existing wind farm production often has to be curtailed."

Just imagine what is going to happen to wind development in states where the transmission planning process is stalled or not even underway yet. I hate to think that wind could hit a major wall like that, but unless we act fast it's coming....
From the Climate+Energy Project blog:

SPP provisionally approves Priority Projects – including Wichita KS to Spearville KS 765 kV transmission line – for additional study and possible January 2010 final vote

From the SPP – will be up on their website soon: (EDIT: click here) EDIT 2: Note, the SPP also got a lot figured out on highway/ byway cost allocation, and the Integrated Transmission Plan.

Emily Pennel, Southwest Power Pool Communications Manager
501.614.3337 •

SPP Priority Transmission Expansion Projects Endorsed, Pending Further Study

October 27, 2009, LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS – Today the Southwest Power Pool, Inc. (SPP) Board of Directors approved a package of transmission expansion “Priority Projects” for further analysis and review by regional stakeholders with oversight from the Strategic Planning Committee and in coordination with the Markets and Operations Policy Committee. In January 2010, the following Priority Projects will be presented for approval to the Board of Directors and Regional State Committee of state regulators:
• 765 kV line in Kansas linking Spearville, a planned substation in Comanche County, Medicine Lodge, and Wichita, operated at 345 kV at an estimated cost of $518 million
• 765 kV line linking a planned substation in Comanche County, Kansas to the planned Woodward District EHV substation near Woodward, Oklahoma operated at 345 kV at an estimated cost of $135 million
• 345 kV double circuit line linking the Hitchland substation south of Guyman, Oklahoma to the planned Woodward District EHV substation near Woodward, Oklahoma at an estimated cost of $237 million
• 345 kV line from Cooper in the southeast corner of Nebraska through Maryville, Missouri to Sibley (just east of Kansas City, Missouri) at an estimated cost of $278 million
• 345 kV line from Valliant in southeast Oklahoma to Texarkana on the Texas-Arkansas state line at an estimated cost of $131 million
• 138 kV reactor at a Tulsa, Oklahoma power station at an estimated cost of $842,000

Total engineering and construction costs are approximately $1.3 billion. Further analysis will be conducted, but the benefits of these projects are expected to exceed costs over the life of the projects, which is 30-40 years....MORE