Boeing Supplier Spirit To Power Wichita Plant with Wind

 - April 17, 2020, 9:53 AM
The Flat Ridge 3 wind farm will generate about 130 MW of power once it's complete by the end of 2020. (Photo: Spirit AeroSystems)

Spirit AeroSystems will convert to using wind-generated electricity at its 12.8 million-sq-ft plant in Wichita after Kansas utility regulators approved a 10-year agreement between the Airbus and Boeing supplier and area utility provider Evergy. Spirit plans to begin the conversion this year.

"Kansas is known for wind, and Spirit Wichita is known for building airplanes,” said Spirit senior v-p for operations and chief procurement officer Ron Rabe. “The two will now be directly connected in a way that helps both the environment and our ability to compete.”

Included in the agreement is an updated electric rate structure that Rabe said brings parity to what Spirit pays in Wichita compared with its other sites, including in Oklahoma and North Carolina. “This new agreement is important to Spirit because it helps maintain the company as a vibrant and growing contributor to the Kansas economy,” he said. “The new electric rates we will be paying address price disadvantages for electric service Spirit has experienced in Kansas compared to our operations in other states.”

Later this year, the Wichita site will begin receiving its electricity from the Flat Ridge 3 wind farm located 44 miles away, near Kingman, Kansas.