EDITORS: Please do not use
"Pacific Gas and Electric" or "PG&E" when
referring to PG&E Corporation or its National Energy Group.
The PG&E National Energy Group is not the same company as Pacific
Gas and Electric Company, the utility, and is not regulated by the
California Public Utilities Commission. Customers of Pacific Gas
and Electric Company do not have to buy products or services from
the National Energy Group in order to continue to receive quality
regulated services from Pacific Gas and Electric Company.
FIRST WIND FARM NEARS COMMERCIAL OPERATION; FACILITY IS FIRST OF
ITS KIND IN NEW YORK STATE
Bethesda, Md. ?New York
State's first merchant wind farm takes another step toward commercial
operation today. PG&E Corporation's (NYSE: PCG) National Energy
Group will mark the occasion at the 11.5-megawatt Madison Windpower
Project in Madison County, New York with a ribbon-cutting ceremony
today and a community open house tomorrow.
"Madison Windpower's commercial
operation is a milestone for us," said PG&E National Energy Group
President and Chief Operating Officer Chris Iribe. "Aside from offering
critical additional capacity to the New York State power market,
we're pioneering a new approach to linking customers to new, renewable
The seven-turbine facility,
the first of its kind east of the Mississippi River, will sell electricity
into the Northeast power grid through the New York State Electric
& Gas Transmission System and the New York Independent System Operator
The company will also offer
Pure Windsm certificates to interested customers. Pure Windsm certificates
correspond to the environmental attributes associated with equivalent
amounts of wind-generated electricity delivered to the New York
power pool. Because wind-generated electricity has no air emissions,
the avoided emissions may be compared to the pollution emitted by
the average of all New York State power generation facilities. On
this basis, total electricity output for the Madison Windpower facility
in an average year will avoid 12,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2),
65 tons of sulfur dioxide (SO2), and 19 tons of nitrogen oxide (NOx).
Pure Windsm certificates
will also be available to consumers through a web-based sales site
at http://www.purewind.net, currently under development.
"Wind power is a commercially
available, economically viable and completely renewable energy source,"
said Iribe. "This project puts Madison on the map as an innovative
leader in the development of renewable energy; and by supporting
this project, New York has jumped to the forefront in demonstrating
its commitment to improved air quality," he added.
To further the process of
bringing renewable power to New York State, the New York State Energy
Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) awarded the Madison
Windpower Project a research and development contract. "As NYSERDA
celebrates its 25th anniversary this week, how fitting it is for
us to be here today celebrating the opening of the largest wind
power plant in the Northeast," said Parker D. Mathusa, a member
of NYSERDA's Board of Directors. "NYSERDA's mission over those years
has been to use innovation and technology to help solve the State's
energy and environmental problems, which is exactly what we are
doing here today as we bring clean power to the market place."
The Madison project joins
one of the nation's fast-growing power generation sectors. According
to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), capacity from windpower
plants has nearly doubled in the last 10 years. Currently, installed
windpower facilities supply nearly 2,650 megawatts of capacity to
With wind speeds between
eight and twenty miles per hour, Madison will supply enough emission-free
electricity to power approximately 10,000 homes.
PG&E Corporation with 1999
revenues of nearly $21 billion and operations in 21 states, markets
energy services and products throughout North America through its
National Energy Group. The Corporation has ownership and management
interests in 30 operating electric power generating plants in 10
states, providing it with a generation portfolio of more than 7,000
megawatts and more than 10,000 megawatts in new power plant development
and construction currently underway. It also has one of the largest
energy trading and risk management programs in North America.