With the signing of two major construction and supply contracts, we are moving closer to the operation of our first wind farm in Mason County near Ludington Michigan. These most recent contracts, for the balance of plant engineering, procurement and construction services for Lake Winds Energy Park, are with White Construction Inc. This is an experienced firm who has built more than 4,000 megawatts of wind energy capacity across North America.
Under this contract, the majority of construction jobs and material purchases will be sourced from within Michigan. A typical wind park project involves about 150 construction jobs. Consumers Energy has filed with the Michigan Public Service Commission for approval of these contracts, as well as the previously-announced Vestas turbine purchase agreement. The contracts were competitively bid and are contingent upon approval by the MPSC.
The wind park also requires a special land use permit from Mason County. Consumers Energy has secured easements for about 79,000 acres for wind farm development in Mason County and on the state’s east side in Tuscola and Huron counties for a second wind farm.
Consumers Energy is currently the largest supplier of renewable energy in the state. Five percent of the electricity we provide to our customers comes from renewable sources in Michigan. By the end of 2012, including the addition of our Lake Winds Energy Park, about eight percent of the power we will supply to our customers is expected to come from Michigan renewable sources.