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Performance of TVA's Buffalo Mountain Wind Power Plant

The Bottom Line

April 17, 2004

For data recently released by TVA, through February 29, 2004

Capacity Factor versus Time
The figure above, showing capacity factor versus time, and table below, with some additional data, summarize the plant's historical electricity production, based on the recently released update from TVA.
As always, TVA still refuses to provide timely or detailed information regarding the performance of their wind power plant, even when requested under the Freedom of Information Act.
TVA continues inconsistent data reporting, although the last two reports were both for 3 month periods. TVA last reported end of February data two years ago, in 2002. One year data, based on interpolation, and two year data are reasonably consistent, however.

Annual energy production from February 28, 2003 through February 29, 2004 was approximately 3.96 million kilowatt hours, which is slightly higher than the last three reports (approximately 3.92 million kilowatt hours from November 30, 2002 through November 30, 2003; approximately 3.66 million kilowatt hours from August 31, 2002 to August 31, 2003, and (3.74 million kilowatt hours from April 2002 to April 2003). Compare this production with TVA's original announced, annual goal (pre-operations) of 6 million kilowatt hours, and TVA's announced revised annual goal (2002) of 4.6 million kilowatt hours. They need to achieve 27% capacity factor to meet the revised goal; however, they are averaging about 21 to 23%.

Over a total of about 40 months of operations, having produced a total of 12.7 million kilowatt hours of energy, the plant has averaged approximately 3.8 million kilowatt hours per year, or about 17% below the revised goal.

The capacity factor for the latest 3 month period was about 29.9%, which is significantly above the long-term, lifetime average capacity factor of about 21.9%.

In other TVA "Green" Power news, production data for Middle Point Landfill has not been reported for the last three newsletters, or for about 9 months. Could this conspicuous absence be due to these reported environmental problems at the facility? As usual TVA's newsletter focused on "education" of children about the benefits of "green" power and highlighted various companies and individuals who support "green" power. TVA also continues to publish their unjustified "story" about green power, which still primarily comes from burning natural gas from sewage and/or landfill gas, being equivalent to planting trees.


Date
Actual
Total
Production
Million
Kilowatt
hours
Theoretical
Capacity
Million
Kilowatt
hours

Lifetime
Capacity
Factor
%
Capacity
Factor
For
Period
%
Days
Since
Start
November 1, 2000 - "Operational Date"
(Actual Start of Operations - Oct. 12)
0
0
n/a
n/a
0
March 31, 2001
1.2
7.2
16
16
151
June 30, 2001
2.1
11.5
19
22
242
September 30, 2001
2.6
15.9
16
9
334
December 31, 2001
3.9
20.2
19
30
426
February 28, 2002
4.8
23.0
21
33
485
April 30, 2002  
5.8
25.9
22
33
546
July 31, 2002  
6.4
30.3
21
16
638
October 31, 2002  
7.0
34.7
20
13
730
January 31, 2003
8.3
39.1
21
30
822
April 30, 2003
9.5
43.3
22
27
911
August 31, 2003 (PDF)
10.3
49.1
21
14
1034
November 30, 2003
11.4
53.5
21
25
1125
February 29, 2004
12.7
57.8
22
30
1216

Previous Bottom Line Reports:
December 2003
October 2003
July 2003
April 2003
December 2002
October 2002
June 2002
April 2002
March 2002
January 2002
November 2001

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