Rivian to use on-site wind to power vehicle manufacturing

The planned site for the 2.8 MW turbine is inside the vehicle test track on the east side of Rivian’s manufacturing campus. (Photo: Business Wire).

Rivian’s Illinois manufacturing plant will soon be supplied with clean power by a 2.8 MW wind turbine.

According to the electric vehicle manufacturer, the project will be located in central Illinois’ Normal campus. The company stated that the single turbine can generate almost 10 million kWh of electricity annually.

The wind turbine project supports the company’s long-term renewable energy vision of developing high-impact projects that reduce its carbon footprint while also benefiting customers, communities, and the electrical grid.

“While we’re working hard to help electrify transportation, we’re also pushing to accelerate the shift to carbon-free electricity for all,” said Andrew Peterman, Rivian director of renewable energy. “This wind turbine is an early step on that path, and it’s also a beacon of our vision for a clean energy future.”

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Rivian has partnered with Apex Clean Energy (a Virginia-based renewable energy company with projects all over the United States), to construct the turbine.

Rivian submitted a permit application to the Town of Normal, Illinois, in June, and the Town’s Planning Commission will consider approval this summer.

The proposed windturbine would be less that 510 feet high and feature white, non-reflective blades. Rivian requested studies to determine the best location for the proposed wind turbine. These studies included studies on sound and shadow flicker, endangered species, cultural resources, communication systems, and potential impacts to sound and shadow flicker. Sound is estimated to average 35 decibels and reach a maximum of 42 decibels – about the level of a refrigerator.

The wind project aligns with Rivian’s strategy of adding renewable resources to parts of the country that need them most. Illinois’ grid is powered by just 11% renewables.

Earlier this year, at the plant’s outbound charging yard, Rivian installed a 783 kW solar canopy that is scheduled to begin generating electricity later this summer.

Rivian has signed a Climate Pledge to reduce net carbon emissions by 2040. This is ten years before the Paris Agreement.