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AEP issues RFP for 1,100 MW of renewable power

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NEW YORK, June 1 (Reuters) - American Electric Power Co Inc (AEP.N) on Monday issued a request for proposals seeking long-term purchases of up to 1,100 megawatts of renewable energy resources to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

The request comes as energy companies across the United States are scrambling to sign contracts for renewable energy to meet anticipated state and federal renewable mandates and cut carbon dioxide emissions.

"AEP is advancing a less carbon-intensive energy future by increasing deployment of renewable resources where they are most viable, driving the development of extra-high voltage transmission to most efficiently deliver energy, and developing advanced clean-coal technologies, including carbon capture and storage," Michael Morris, AEP chairman, president and chief executive officer, said in a release.

AEP plans to invest billions in transmission infrastructure to move the new renewable energy from where it will be produced to where it would be consumed. The company wants the federal government to pass legislation to support construction of a national transmission system to help meet the country's renewable goals.

"Without significant extra-high-voltage transmission investment, our national renewable aspirations cannot be achieved," Morris said in the release.

The renewable RFP is part of AEP's goal to add 2,000 MW of new wind or other renewable energy by the end of 2011 as part of its strategy to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.

AEP said the proposals must be interconnected to PJM or Southwest Power Pool grid and be operational no later than Dec. 31, 2011. AEP will conduct pre-bid webinars for potential bidders June 16 for PJM bidders and June 18 for SPP bidders.

AEP's wind energy portfolio currently is 1,783 MW, including 310 MW of wind generation owned and operated by AEP in Texas and 1,473 MW of wind energy acquired through long-term power purchase agreements.

AEP, of Columbus, Ohio, owns and operates nearly 38,000 MW of generating capacity, markets energy commodities, and transmits and distributes electricity to more than 5 million customers in 11 states.

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