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Newton, Mass.-based First Wind has received approval from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for its proposed 60 MW Rollins Wind project in Penobscot County, Maine. First Wind filed its permit application with the DEP in October 2008.

The Rollins Wind project will consist of 40 1.5 MW wind turbines. Construction is planned to commence later this year.

According to First Wind, Rollins Wind is expected to create numerous construction jobs and provide significant tax revenue to the surrounding communities. For example, First Wind spent $50 million with Maine-based businesses and employed over 350 workers during the construction of Stetson Wind, a 57 MW project in Washington County that has been in operation since January 2009. The Rollins Wind project is expected to provide similar benefits to the region.

"We saw a real boost to the economy last summer, when the transmission line was being built for the Stetson project," says State Rep. Jeffrey A. Gifford, R-Lincoln. "I can see the Rollins Wind project as being very good for Lincoln by providing economic opportunity for the region. It's a win-win situation for everyone."

First Wind, along with Stetson Wind, owns and operates the 42 MW Mars Hill Wind project in Aroostook County. Recently, First Wind received approval from the Maine Land Use Regulation Commission for a 25.5 MW expansion to the Stetson Wind project. In addition, the company recently submitted a permit application with the DEP for a 51 MW wind project in the town of Oakfield in Aroostook County.

SOURCE: First Wind

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