MGE generates and distributes electricity to approximately 179,000 customers. MGE owns generation units or purchases electricity through contracts and from the Midcontinent Independent System Operator energy market.
West Campus Cogeneration Facility
- This 150-megawatt (MW) natural gas-fired facility provides electricity to MGE customers and steam heat and chilled-water air-conditioning to the UW-Madison campus.
- Through the efficiency of cogeneration and emission controls, it is one of the cleanest power plants in the Midwest.
- The facility, jointly owned by MGE and the State of Wisconsin, began operation in spring 2005.
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- MGE has wind energy capacity of 153 MW.
- MGE wind farms:
- Rosiere: An 11-MW wind farm in Kewaunee County, Wis., that began operation in 1999.
- Top of Iowa 3: A 30-MW wind farm in Kensett, Iowa, that came online in early 2008.
- Forward Energy Center: The 130-MW wind farm is owned by MGE, Alliant Energy and Wisconsin Public Service Corp. It was built in 2008 in Dodge and Fond du Lac Counties, Wis.
- Saratoga: A 66-MW wind farm in Saratoga, Iowa, that came online in February 2019.
- In addition, MGE purchases wind capacity from the 80-MW Top of Iowa wind farm in Worth County, Iowa.
- In early 2022, MGE obtained regulatory approval to purchase a 9.1 MW share of the Red Barn Wind Farm to be built in Grant County.
Columbia Energy Center
- MGE is a minority owner of the Columbia Energy Center near Portage, Wis. MGE co-owns the power plant with Wisconsin Public Service and Alliant Energy.
- The co-owners of the power plant expect its full retirement by June 2026.
- Built in the early 1970s, the approximately 1,100-MW facility has two coal-fired units.
- Alliant Energy is the operating utility.
Blount Generating Station
- MGE owns and operates the 100-MW Blount plant in central Madison. The original plant was built in 1902 and expanded several times.
- The plant operates on natural gas.
- Under MGE's Energy 2015 plan, Blount discontinued burning coal at the end of 2011.
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Elm Road Generating Station at Oak Creek
- MGE is part owner of the Elm Road Generating Station at the Oak Creek Power Plant located in Oak Creek, Wis., along with We Energies and Wisconsin Public Power Inc.
- Unit 1 began operation in February 2010 and Unit 2 in January 2011. The units produce a total of 1,230 MW.
- MGE receives a total of 100 MW from the plant—50 MW from each unit.
- In late 2021, MGE, as a minority owner, and the other co-owners of Elm Road announced the eventual transition of the coal-fired plant to natural gas. By the end of 2030, MGE expects coal to be used only as a backup fuel, and we expect the elimination of coal as a fuel source at Elm Road by the end of 2035.
MGE continues to grow its solar capacity, which includes:
- Photovoltaic installations owned by MGE including nearly 500 solar panels at MGE's headquarters that supply almost 10% of the building's annual electric needs.
- Customer-owned solar that is connected to our grid.
- MGE's Shared Solar installations on the roof of the City of Middleton Municipal Operations Center and at the Middleton Municipal Airport.
- 50 MW from the Two Creeks Solar array, co-owned with Wisconsin Public Service Corp., in Manitowoc County.
- 9 MW from the solar array at the Dane County Regional Airport, a partnership through MGE's innovative Renewable Energy Rider program, that supplies Dane County with about 40% of the electricity used by County-owned facilities.
- 20 MW from the O’Brien Solar Fields in the City of Fitchburg. The array serves several large customers under MGE’s Renewable Energy Rider program.
- 50 MW from the Badger Hollow Solar Farm in Iowa County.
- 8 MW from the Hermsdorf Solar Fields, which serves the City of Madison and the Madison Metropolitan School District under MGE’s Renewable Energy Rider program.
Additional solar projects
are currently under construction.
- MGE purchases electricity from a manure digester in western Dane County. The digester generated more than 9.3 million kWh in 2020—enough to power nearly 1,500 homes.
- MGE's electric system includes five combustion turbines located at three Madison-area substations. These units are used to provide system reliability, especially in times of heavy electric use.
- MGE owns and operates a natural gas-fired generator near Marinette, Wis. The 83-MW unit began operation in June 2000. MGE operates the unit from its headquarters in Madison.
- MGE owns and operates 57 backup generators located at business customers' sites. The total capacity of these units is about 54 MW.
- Customers pay a monthly fee to have this generation available if power is interrupted.
- MGE also can use these units to boost system reliability during an electrical emergency.
- MGE buys power from other utilities through contracts and from the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) energy market.
- The power is delivered over the transmission lines that serve our area.