Missouri regulators approve Midwest wind energy power line

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri regulators have reversed course and given the go-ahead to one of the nation’s largest renewable energy projects.

The Grain Belt Express power line approved Wednesday would carry wind power from Kansas on a 780-mile (1,255 kilometer) path across Missouri and Illinois before hooking into a power grid in Indiana that serves eastern states.

The Missouri Public Service Commission had rejected the project twice previously, but it reconsidered following a ruling last year by the state Supreme Court.

In November, Chicago-based Invenergy announced it was buying the project from Houston-based Clean Line Energy Partners. That deal should bolster the financing, but the sale still needs regulatory approval.

The transmission line also would need regulatory approval in Illinois, where a state appeals court overturned the state’s previous approval.

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