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We Energies plans biomass plant

Wisconsin, US-based wind farm operator We Energies is looking to build a biomass plant.

The company has filed an application with state regulators to build a $255 million (€185 million) biomass power plant near Wausau.

The project would supply steam to Domtar’s paper mill in Rothschild and create up to 150 jobs.
The 50MW power plant would generate enough power to supply 40,000 typical homes.

Construction would start next year and last for about 30 months. The project is expected to create about 400 temporary construction jobs in addition to jobs at the power plant and in the logging and forestry sector.

The project is needed to help the utility comply with the state's renewable energy mandate, which the state enacted in 2006. Under that law, 10% of Wisconsin's electricity must come from renewable sources by 2015.

We Energies has requested the Public Service Commission to rule on the project by year-end to help it stay on a timeline aimed at the project qualifying for a 30% federal tax credit.