To meet customer demand, Vestas expects to add “hundreds” of jobs at its three Colorado factories, including a blade-manufacturing facility in Windsor, during the first half of 2014.
The company received a 220-megawatt order Thursday from EDF Renewable Energy for V-100-2.0 MW turbines for two wind-energy projects in Texas, which will necessitate the hiring of “hundreds” of production workers, primarily at the company’s two blade factories in Windsor and Brighton, Vestas spokesman Andrew Longeteig said Friday.
The Windsor blade-manufacturing facility will create all of the blades for the 100-meter rotors for the Texas projects, Longeteig said.
“This is good news for our Colorado factories,” he said. “We’ll be adding hundreds of jobs in the first half of 2014. They are good jobs with good pay and benefits, and it’s a chance to work in an interesting industry.”
Longeteig wouldn’t provide specifics about how many people the company expects to hire at the Windsor plant. He said Vestas currently employs about 1,300 manufacturing employees in the state.
“The production tax credits are a huge driver for the market,” he said. “In the years it expires, we see big drop off (in employment), and when it’s renewed we see a spike. Obviously it can be challenging for businesses to plan ahead when they’re looking to Congress to pass tax credits like this. The industry as a whole is looking for stability and a long-term energy strategy.”
Both of the wind-energy projects are located in the Texas Panhandle. The first, known as the Hereford 1 project, will feature 50 V100-2.0 MW turbines, while the second, the 200 MW Longhorn North project, will include 100 units of the same turbine, Longeteig said.
“One megawatt of wind capacity can power about 300 households,” Longeteig said. “Once this is built and installed to capacity, it will have the ability to deliver electricity to 66,000 households.”
Deliveries and commissioning for both projects are expected to occur in the second half of 2014.
“Based on our orders, it looks promising that we’ll be busy in 2014 and 2015,” Longeteig said.