Good Life

BP wind farm to span four Kansas counties

A day before Gov. Sam Brownback's renewable energy summit, BP Wind Energy officials unveiled plans to build Kansas' biggest wind farm.

At a Monday news conference at Wichita State University's Hughes Metropolitan Complex, BP said it planned to build an $800 million, 419-megawatt capacity wind farm sprawling across 66,000 acres in Harper, Barber, Kingman and Sumner counties.

Construction on the project, named the Flat Ridge 2 wind farm, is slated to start this year and be completed by fall 2012.

It will produce 500 construction jobs and 30 operations jobs, once the project is complete.

BP will pay more than $1 million a year for 20 years to the 200 landowners hosting the turbines and about the same amount to the local governments.

Brownback has touted wind and other alternative energies as one of the state's best economic development opportunities.

He will kick off a two-day summit on alternative energy this morning at the Hyatt Regency Wichita downtown. The gathering will focus on growth and development of renewable energy, traditional energy and utility transmission.

"I love wind energy. It's a fabulous industry that fits our state well," Brownback told the audience of company executives and state and county officials.

The project is strongly welcomed by the four counties hosting the wind farm.

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