US utility Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) has issued a request for proposals (RFP) for 500MW of solar as part of its new integrated resource plan that calls for the addition of more than 2GW of renewables by 2028.
The invitation seeks bids from developers of PV projects in Indiana and/or Michigan that should be online by the end of 2025. I&M, a subsidiary of American Electric Power, is also aiming to procure 800MW of wind.
The RFP provides bidders with the opportunity to submit proposals that incorporate battery storage, emerging technologies and other resources to provide for optimum performance and affordability.
It also calls for successful bidders to use reasonable efforts to use small and diverse suppliers as subcontractors for work. With bids due by 21 April, I&M plans to have contracts with successful developers by the end of 2022.
The new solar and wind recourses will combine with I&M’s existing generation to provide a more diversified and flexible portfolio “that will stabilise energy costs over time, stimulate economic growth, reduce emissions and take advantage of new technologies”, said Dave Lucas, I&M vice president for regulatory and finance.
While I&M currently has nearly 35MW of large-scale solar generation in Indiana and Michigan, the utility is set to ramp up its renewables portfolio through its latest integrated resource plan, released last month.
Alongside the new RFP, the utility also plans to seek proposals for around 800MW of solar, 60MW of battery storage and 1GW from gas peaking units through a second round in the future.
I&M’s solar expansion in Indiana comes after EDF Renewables completed construction earlier this year of what it said is the state’s largest PV plant, the 200MW Riverstart solar farm in Randolph County.
Also in Indiana, utility CenterPoint Energy received approval from authorities in October to acquire a 300MW PV project and enter into a PPA for an additional 100MW of solar in the state.