- Associated Press - Thursday, November 12, 2015

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The South Dakota Public Utilities Commission has approved a construction permit for a 103-megawatt wind farm about 10 miles northeast of Newell.

The Willow Creek Wind Energy Facility to be built by Wind Quarry LLC will include 45 wind turbines and will interconnect to a 115-kilovolt transmission line owned by the Western Area Power Administration. Construction of the wind farm and substation could begin next month, and the farm could be operational as early as December 2017.

Wind Quarry filed its application on May 27, and the PUC held a public hearing in Newell in July. The commission approved the permit on Thursday.

The National Renewal Energy Laboratory says South Dakota ranks fourth in the nation for potential to generate energy from wind.

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