Google, Itochu, Sumitomo buy into massive Oregon wind farm

The 845-megawatt Shepherds Flat wind project near Arlington, Ore. now counts Google, Itochu, Sumitomo, General Electric and Caithness Energy as owners.

Google, ITOCHU and Sumitomo are joining General Electric as investors in the world's largest wind farm in Oregon.

Under the terms of the deal, Google, ITOCHU Corporation subsidiary Tyr Energy and Sumitomo Corp. subsidiary Sumitomo Corp. of America will invest about $500 million in the $2 billion wind farm.

GE and developer Caithness Energy were already on board with the 845-megawatt Shepherds Flat wind project near Arlington, Ore. Other details of the investment weren't disclosed.

Shepherds Flat has three 20-year power purchase agreements with Southern California Edison. Google touted the Shepherds Flat project because its advanced technology can bring down the costs of wind power.

The Shepherds Flat construction will occur in three phases. So far, turbine foundations are complete and electrical and road work is almost finished on the first phase, which provides 265 megawatts. The second phase, which covers 290 megawatts, is halfway finished on turbine foundation construction and road work. Construction is also underway on the third 290 megawatt phase. The project, which employs 400, includes erecting 338 turbines, developing 95 miles of roads and 167 miles of transmission lines.

Google has been on a clean-tech investing tear. The company has invested more than $350 million in clean tech and recently announced a $168 million investment in BrightSource Energy’s Ivanpah solar electric project in California .

ITOCHU and Sumitomo also have a bevy of clean tech deals. ITOCHU and GE have teamed up on a wind farm in Oklahoma. Sumitomo and GE jointly own a Texas wind farm with investments in Japan and China.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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