(Chron.com, Sergio Chapa, 17.Jun.2019) — Wind turbine blades that are now being made in the Mexican border town of Matamoros will soon find themselves installed in projects throughout the United States and Latin America.
German wind turbine maker and wind farm developer Nordex Acciona recently began production at the company’s new Matamoros plant at Parque Industrial Las Ventanas off Highway 2 on the city’s far westside.
Built in six months, the new plant employs 300 people in two production lines. Nordex is using the plant to make turbine blades that will be for turbines that generate between 4 and 4.5 megawatts of power as well as another model that generates between 3 and 3.4 megawatts of power.
Described as some of the largest wind turbine blades ever produced by the German company, Nordex Group CEO Jose Luis Blanco-Dieguez said was necessary to have the most advanced technology.
“For Nordex Group, this plant represent one of the largest investments made by the company, which shows our commitment with Mexico, with the workers productivity and we’re convinced that it will be a successful case.” Blanco-Dieguez said in a statement.
Nordex Acciona invested $63.1 million dollars to build the Matamoros plant, which is expected to produce 1,000 wind turbine blades per year — roughly one-third of the company’s production.
With blades being made for the growing number of wind farm projects in the United States, Mexico and Latin America, the plant is expected to hire another 500 people over the next few years.
Although the industrial park is next to an cross-border rail line, blades made for U.S. wind farms are expected to be hauled by truck across the nearby Los Indios International Bridge. Eventually, the blades will be exported through the Port of Matamoros, a new waterway being developed by the State of Tamaulipas.
The Nordex Acciona plant is the second wind turbine blade plant to open in Matamoros over the past year. Arizona wind turbine blade maker TPI Composites opened a plant in the border city in October with Dutch wind turbine company Vestas as its anchor customer.
With several wind farms already in operation in Tamaulipas, the border state has emerged as one of Mexico’s top producers of wind energy. In a statement, Tamaulipas Gov. Francisco Garcia-Cabeza de Vaca said the new wind turbine blade plants will compliment and boost that production.
“Thanks to the installation of new wind farms, the state will generate 29 times more wind energy —greatly increasing its contribution to the national electricity grid from 54 to 1,556 megawatts,” García-Cabeza de Vaca said in a statement.