Largest solar plant in Texas gets the green light
Texas may be known for being a major oil-producing state in the US, but it has a strong renewable streak as well.
The state’s vast plains are home to over 12,000 wind turbines with a combined capacity of 22,000 megawatts, making it one of the world’s powerhouses for this technology.
The past few years has also seen a sharp increase in the number of new solar panels in the sun-drenched state; as of 2017 it ranks fourth with the highest amount of capacity in the US.
The largest of those projects has, up to now, been a 150 megawatt solar farm spanning 1,600 acres in Upton County.
However, this will soon be overtaken following the news this week that Canadian company Innergex has acquired the rights to develop a 250 megawatt solar project in Winkler County, west Texas. The solar farm will have the capacity to power 53,000 households when it reaches completion by the end of 2019.
The Québec-based company has a large portfolio of renewable projects, but the Phoebe project represents only its fourth stake in the solar industry.
The cost of the project is estimated to cost $397 million with Wells Fargo expected to provide a portion of the equity financing. The deal forms part of the bank’s commitment to invest $200 billion in clean technologies by 2030.
A 12-year power purchase agreement has also been signed by Innergex with Shell North America to provide 89 percent of the power.
“We are very much looking forward to breaking ground on our largest solar project to date. I am confident that our experience and expertise in developing and managing renewable energy projects will ensure the successful completion of the Phoebe project and demonstrate our commitment to growing our diversified portfolio of assets”, said Michel Letellier, President and Chief Executive Officer at Innergex.