May 4, 2015 at 4:08 pm
ST. CLOUD, Minn. (KNSI) - A dedication ceremony was held today in St. Cloud to commemorate the completion of two high-voltage electric transmission lines -- part of CapX2020.
The CapX2020 Brookings County-Hampton and Fargo-St. Cloud-Monticello projects complete $1.3 billion worth of electric grid investment in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota.
Will Kaul is chairman of CapX2020, a joint initiative of 11 transmission-owning utilities in Minnesota, the Dakotas and Wisconsin
“It’s just in time when the concern about the grid and the security and the resilience of the grid is very high … a time when the resource mix that is coming into play is in transition and new resources are coming online,” Kaul said.
The two projects took 11 years and were completed on time and without going over budget to provide reliable, affordable service to Minnesota and the surrounding region, while also expanding access to renewable energy, according to Teresa Mogensen of Xcel Energy.
“We compare our CapX2020 lines to another big project – the Vikings stadium – that’s a $1 billion investment, too,” said Mogensen, who provided some perspective.
The CapX2020 projects include four 345 kV transmission lines and one 230 kV line -- the largest development of new transmission in the Upper Midwest in almost four decades.
One way the CapX2020 projects help keep prices low is by alleviating congestion on the system. When more electricity is needed in an area than the area’s transmission system can provide, electricity is dispatched from a different generation source that can serve the area, but at a higher cost.
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