US awards $US1.3bn loan guarantee to wind project

Reuters (BANGALORE) - The USDepartment of Energy has finalised a $US1.3 billion loan guarantee to help finance the Caithness Shepherds Flat project, an 845-megawatt wind generation facility in eastern Oregon sponsored by Caithness Energy, LLC and GE Energy Financial Services.

The loan is funded by a group of 26 institutional investors and commercial banks led by Citigroup Inc, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd, and RBS Securities.

The Department of Energy made the announcement on Thursday.

The $US2 billion Shepherds Flat project, being developed by independent power producer Caithness Energy, will span some 30 square miles (78 sq km) and have the capacity to generate 845 megawatts of electricity. That is enough to meet the needs of 235,000 typical homes in California, where most of the power generated will be sold.

The Shepherds Flat wind farm will supply energy to Southern California Edison, a unit of Edison International.

Earlier this month, General Electric Co had won a $US1.4 billion contract from energy producer Caithness Energy LLC to supply wind turbines for what will eventually be the world's biggest wind farm.

(Reporting by Soma Das in Bangalore)