The first utility power purchase in the Louisiana Public Service Commission’s experiment with renewable energy is going to lower costs for customers, according to Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell.

Meeting Wednesday in Winnfield, the PSC approved a 20-year contract by Southwestern Electric Power Co. of Shreveport with a Kansas wind farm for 31 megawatts of power.

Combined with a previous purchase of 80 megawatts of Texas wind power, the new Flat River 2 Wind Energy agreement represents 2 percent of Southwestern’s Electric’s overall usage and fulfills the PSC’s requirement in its renewable energy pilot program.

“Considering that renewable energy has historically cost more than power from conventional sources, this new SWEPCO wind purchase is a notable achievement for the company and for the Louisiana PSC,” said Campbell.

Southwestern Electric Power Co., or SWEPCO, requested authority from the PSC to confirm a 20-year purchase of power from Flat Ridge 2 Wind Energy LLC. The Kansas wind farm was one of more than 45 firms that submitted proposals to SWEPCO earlier this year as part of its mandate from the PSC to test the market for green energy.

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