A unit of Pattern Energy Group LP asked the Mississippi Public Service Commission in April for permission to build a portion of the Southern Cross transmission project in the state.

Southern Cross is a proposed ±500 kilovolt (kV) high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission line with a base load capacity of 2,000 megawatts (delivered in either direction after losses and before overloads). The line would bring wind energy produced in Texas to the transmission grid and customers in the Southeast.

The Southern Cross project would be one of the nation's first overhead HVDC transmission lines constructed in nearly two decades. All of the capital investment required for the project is being provided by private investors.

The project could start construction in 2018 and begin delivering power in 2021.

Southern Cross would interconnect with the proposed Rusk to Panola Transmission Project, a double circuit 345 kV transmission line sponsored by Garland Power & Light and Rusk Interconnection LLC. The line would connect the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), which is a separate grid.

ERCOT typically frowns on interconnections outside of its region in an effort to remain largely free from federal oversight through the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The project web site says that Garland Power & Light was ordered by the FERC to provide the interconnection.

At the end of 2016 Texas had more than 20,000 MW of wind generating capacity installed, first in the U.S. Another 5,400 MW was under construction, according to the American Wind Energy Association.