Xcel breaks ground on largest wind farm in New Mexico


AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Xcel Energy broke ground on what will be the largest wind farm in the state of New Mexico.

Scheduled to be up and running by this time next year, this 240 turbine farm will produce enough energy to power 194,000 homes.

“If you look at how much power is being generated here, it is going to be used by the local people here as well, and that would be enough, we heard in the groundbreaking today, to power about 25 percent of all the households in New Mexico,” said Bryant Coon, senior citing and land right agent of Xcel Energy.

What has most residents talking about is the economic impact this farm will bring. It is projected to bring 400 temporary construction jobs within the year and create 30 full-time operations jobs long term. With this, Xcel estimates this farm will bring in 131.5 million dollars in state and local benefits over the years.

“When you’re talking about a capital investment of almost a billion dollars, somewhere around 900 million dollars, the public economics come into play. It’s going to benefit New Mexico, it’s going to benefit the Dora school district, it’s going to benefit Roosevelt county as well as the entire state of New Mexico,” said Mark Roper, division director, New Mexico economic development.

One of the biggest beneficiaries of this project will be the Dora school district, which already is looking forward to the financial help to improve their schools.

“As any school in the state right now, finances to support anything is really challenging. Trying to support quality educators and supplies for students, and then most of the schools in this state are challenged with an old building. So there are some improvements in facilities we want to look at," said Patrick Kircher, vice president of Dora school board.

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