US-based Southern Company subsidiary Southern Power will construct a 200MW wind facility in Reading, Kansas, after signing an agreement with global cruise vacation company Royal Caribbean Cruises.

The new Reading Wind facility is reported to be Southern Power’s eleventh wind facility, which will be developed in Osage and Lyon Counties, Kansas.

It will also be Southern Power’s first project to be validated as a carbon offset project under the Verified Carbon Standard.

"Southern Power’s new wind facility is expected to generate nearly 760,000MWph of clean energy on an annual basis."

Southern Power president and CEO Mark Lantrip said: “Southern Power is thrilled to partner with Royal Caribbean to provide the company with a carbon offset project that will further complement Royal Caribbean’s expansive sustainability initiatives.

“Reading Wind celebrates the first project in our joint development agreement with RES America Developments (RES), qualifying for 100% production tax credits and is an important addition to Southern Power’s portfolio.

“We’re proud to support Royal Caribbean’s innovative approach toward advancing its sustainability through this project.”

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Southern Power’s new wind facility is expected to generate nearly 760,000MWph of clean energy on an annual basis.

The new 12-year agreement, which will begin from 2020, is expected to offset up to 12% of Royal Caribbean’s emissions.

The deal is also expected to support Royal Caribbean’s extensive sustainability efforts, which include programmes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through innovations at sea and in port.

Royal Caribbean Cruises chairman and CEO Richard Fain said: “This agreement complements our longstanding strategic initiatives to reduce the company’s emissions and become a more sustainable operator.”

The Reading Wind facility will break ground in the second quarter of next year and is expected to be completed by the second quarter of 2020. It will be equipped with 62 wind turbines manufactured by Siemens Gamesa.

Upon completion, Southern Power will operate and maintain the facility.