Southern Company subsidiary Southern Power announced today that its commitment to develop renewable generation has surpassed 400 megawatts (MW) in the state of Georgia with the acquisition of the 20-MW Butler Solar Farm from Strata Solar.
“By harnessing emerging technologies, and innovating around the full energy portfolio, Southern Company continues to fulfill our promise to deliver real solutions for America’s energy future,” said Southern Company Chairman, President and CEO Thomas A. Fanning.
Strata Solar launched the project, which was selected by Southern Company subsidiary Georgia Power in a competitive process through the nationally recognized Georgia Power Advanced Solar Initiative.
To be located on approximately 150 acres in Taylor County, Georgia – approximately one mile from the previously-acquired 103-MW Butler Solar Facility – the Butler Solar Farm is expected to enter commercial operation in the fourth quarter of 2015. It will consist of more than 263,000 of First Solar, Inc.’s thin-film photovoltaic solar modules.
Construction is slated to begin in July, with Strata Solar managing the engineering, procurement and construction of the facility. Southern Power will provide the onsite operation and maintenance of the facility in partnership with First Solar.
Georgia Power will purchase the energy generated from the 20-MW farm under a 20-year power purchase agreement. Southern Power will retain the associated renewable energy credits, which it may sell to third parties.
A national leader in renewable energy, Southern Power has announced, acquired or is constructing more than 1,200 MW of renewable generating capacity with 18 solar, wind and biomass projects, including six solar projects in Georgia. These projects add diversity and reliability to Southern Company’s generation mix of nuclear, 21st century coal, natural gas, renewables and energy efficiency.
The Butler Solar Farm fits Southern Power’s business strategy of growing its wholesale business through the acquisition and construction of generating assets substantially covered by long-term contracts.