Innovation

The SOO Green Renewable Rail project is an innovative underground transmission solution to efficiently deliver high-quality wind energy from the Upper Midwest to eastern U.S. markets. It creates a new model for how transmission is sited in the United States, cost effectively enabling the large-scale integration of renewable energy into the U.S. electrical grid.

  • SOO Green begins outside Mason City, Iowa, and runs approximately 349-miles to a substation in Plano, Illinois.
  • The route, which is almost entirely comprised of existing railroad rights-of-way (ROW), will efficiently transfer up to 2100 MW of inexpensive, high-quality wind energy via an underground High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) line comprised of two slender cables buried in the ROW. Some highway or “road” ROW may also be utilized.
  • HVDC is superior to alternating current (AC) lines for longer routes due to its lower energy losses and smaller footprint.
  • Transport by rail offers significant construction efficiencies.
  • SOO Green is an innovative project that seeks to replicate the model used to build America’s fiber optic network by burying an underground HVDC transmission line along an existing railroad to transport low-cost wind energy from the Upper Midwest to eastern U.S. markets.
  • Direct Connect Development Company (“DC DevCo”) is the project team built specifically for HVDC projects like SOO Green. It is comprised of an all-star staff that, in each aspect of project development and construction, is quite simply the best in the business. DC DevCo does not own the SOO Green project, but will act as its developer. DC DevCo is led by energy and environmental lawyer Trey Ward (CEO) and solar developer Joe DeVito (president).