NPPD plans to construct a 345,000-volt transmission line from NPPD’s Gerald Gentleman Station near Sutherland to NPPD’s existing substation east of Thedford. The new line will then proceed east and connect to a substation in Holt County.
NPPD’s electric grid is an essential link to ensuring service for our customers. The R-Project will increase the reliability of the transmission system, relieve congestion on the existing system, and provide additional opportunities for development of renewable projects if desired at the local level. The first two reasons take precedence over the third as, even if no renewable energy projects ever connect to this line, it is still needed to address reliability concerns and relieve congestion.
NPPD is a member of the Southwest Power Pool, a regional transmission organization. The SPP conducted a study, also known as the Integrated Transmission Plan, to assess the needs of the entire transmission network with the SPP region over the next 10 years. The R-Project is one of numerous projects to come out of that study. If NPPD did not build the R-Project, the SPP would find another entity to do so.
For the R-Project, adding facilities to an existing substation to meet transmission network reliability or customer electrical energy delivery needs is the most cost-effective solution. Additionally, the Thedford 115kV substation is at the midpoint of the west leg of the 115kV transmission network serving north central Nebraska and is centrally located with respect to the termination points of the R-Project transmission line.