Impact of Curtailment on Wind Economics

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 6:08am
Posted by Janine E. Mooney, Editor
A 2010 study conducted for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) revealed that 2009 wind generation curtailment varied significantly by jurisdiction — ranging from as low as 1 percent in the Midwest Transmission System Operator’s (MISO) control area to as high as 16 percent and 10 percent in Texas and Alberta, Canada respectively.  These higher levels of curtailment can have a significant impact on a wind generator’s economics. The table below provides an overview of the impacts of different levels of curtailment on both revenue and the Debt Service Coverage Ratio (DSCR), a key metric used by lenders to determine a project’s ability to meet debt obligations.1


March 29, 2012


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