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FirstEnergy Solutions, a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp., has entered into a 23-year agreement with PPM Energy, a Portland, Ore.-based wind project developer, to purchase 34.5 MW of output from the Casselman Wind Power Project in Somerset County, Pa.

The Casselman project is being developed by PPM Energy - it is slated to begin construction this summer and be completed by the end of 2007. The wind farm is expected to include 23 wind turbines at 1.5 MW each, the companies say.

"This agreement will bring our total amount of wind power contracts to 464.5 MW - positioning FirstEnergy to become one of the largest renewable energy suppliers in our region," says Guy Pipitone, FirstEnergy's senior vice president of operations strategy and development.

The Casselman project, which encompasses almost 2,000 acres, was awarded a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection because it will use several hundred acres of reclaimed surface mine areas. In addition, the project received a production incentive grant from the TRF Sustainable Development Fund. The wind farm is expected to create approximately 60 jobs during construction and three to four full-time jobs in the community once it becomes operational.

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