National Grid subsidiary Geronimo Energy has announced the start of commercial operations at the 200MW Crocker windfarm in Clark County, South Dakota.

Crocker has already entered into Virtual Power Purchase Agreements (VPPAs) with Walmart and Cargill. The project, built by Wanzek Construction, will feature GE 2.7-116 wind turbines.

Geronimo Energy CEO Blake Nixon said: “Crocker coming online represents the culmination of many years of collaboration with the community and has and will continue to bring economic development to rural South Dakota.

“Crocker is unique in that it is 100% contracted by corporate Virtual Power Purchase Agreements.

“Increasingly more corporations are making the choice to include renewable energy procurement in their sustainability goals – and Geronimo is proud to be playing a role in our industry’s continued growth and expansion into corporate power purchasing.”

According to Geronimo Energy, the project is expected to benefit the economy with tens of millions in tax revenue, landowner payments, new full-time job creation, and $800,000 in charitable funding in the first 20 years of operation.

Cargill operations and natural resources sustainability director Peter Dahm said: “We’re excited to see the Crocker windfarm begin operations.

“Not only will the windfarm play a vital role in helping us reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, we’re also proud of the positive impact it will have on the Clark county community and helping local landowners diversify their source of income.”

Walmart energy vice-president Mark Vanderhelm said: “Sourcing from wind energy projects, like the Crocker Wind Farm, brings Walmart closer to our goal to be supplied by 50% renewable energy by 2025.

“The energy we’ll procure from this facility represents a significant step in our renewable energy journey.”