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CalPERS' Real Assets Program to Purchase Stake in Wind Farms

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System today announced that it has entered into an agreement to purchase an 80 percent cash equity interest in Rocky Caney Holdings LLC, which owns two wind farms, the Caney River facility in Elk County, Kansas, and the Rocky Ridge facility in Kiowa and Washita Counties, Oklahoma.

Renewable energy investments provide approximately 900 MW of clean power

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System announced that it has entered into an agreement to purchase an 80 percent cash equity interest in Rocky Caney Holdings LLC ("Rocky Caney Wind"), which owns two wind farms, the Caney River facility in Elk County, Kansas, and the Rocky Ridge facility in Kiowa and Washita Counties, Oklahoma.

Caney River is a 200 MW facility that began commercial operations in late 2011, selling all of its output to the Tennessee Valley Authority. Rocky Ridge is a 149 MW facility that began commercial operations in early 2012, selling its output to Western Farmers Electric Cooperative. Both facilities sell their output under long-term contracts.

"This is a great opportunity for CalPERS to expand our renewable energy holdings," said Ted Eliopoulos, CalPERS chief investment officer. "The wind farms are not only an important source of clean energy, they also meet the strategic role of our real assets program."

CalPERS made the investment through the Gulf Pacific Power LLC account, an existing partnership between CalPERS and Harbert Management Corporation. GPP pursues North American power assets, and includes a dedicated mandate for renewables which CalPERS is actively seeking to grow further. Rocky Caney Wind is the second renewables investment for GPP and follows the earlier acquisitions of Desert Sunlight, a 550 MW(ac) solar photovoltaic power generation facility in eastern Riverside County, California.

The cash equity stake was acquired from Enel Green Power North America, an Enel Group company, which develops and operates renewable energy plants around the world. Enel will retain 20 percent cash equity interest in Rocky Caney Wind and will continue to manage, operate, and perform maintenance activities at both wind farms.

Next Finance 4 December
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