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Members of Dairyland Power Cooperative's Board of Directors, member cooperative managers, local elected officials and representatives from U.S. Sens. Tammy Baldwin and Ron Johnson’s offices attended the Open House for Dairyland’s RockGen Energy Center (Cambridge, Wis.) on June 22. Educational tours through the facility were provided by RockGen plant operators.

During the event, Dairyland presented donations to the Albion Academy Historical Society and the Cambridge Fire Department.

• The Albion Academy was founded in 1853 as Wisconsin’s first institute of co-educational higher education. Kumlien Hall, the only remaining structure, now operates as museum. Dairyland’s $1,000 donation will assist in the preservation and education efforts of the Albion Academy Historical Society.

• Dairyland donated $1,400 to the Cambridge Volunteer Fire Department towards the purchase of an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED). The Cambridge Fire Department is a critical part of safety planning at the RockGen facility and an important community partner.

Dairyland acquired the 503 MW RockGen natural gas power plant in December 2021.

“RockGen will help meet our members’ power supply needs as we transition to more renewable resources,” said President and CEO Brent Ridge, at the time of acquisition. “Safely delivering reliable and sustainable electricity to our members is critical as we continue to diversify Dairyland’s energy portfolio and lower carbon intensity. With the closing of our coal-fired Genoa Station #3, the availability of this existing, low-cost and reliable facility in Wisconsin is both timely and a good strategic fit for our power supply portfolio.”

Operational since 2001, the RockGen Energy Center is a simple-cycle, dual fuel power generating facility that operates mainly on natural gas. The three 168 MW low-NOx combustion turbines (CTs) can ramp up and down quickly to support intermittent solar and wind resources. In 2020, re-commissioning was completed to allow operation on fuel oil as a backup fuel source. This fuel flexibility enhances reliability in the region when or if the natural gas supply is limited.