North Carolina is expected to be a hotspot for solar. Credit: innogy/Belectric
Garmen firm innogy SE, a subsidiary of the utility RWE, has acquired stakes in two solar projects in North Carolina totalling 10MW capacity.
These are the company's first such projects in the US as it looks to expand its renewables activity in this region, having partnered with locally-based developer Birdseye Renewable Energy last June. Birdseye specialises in the greenfield development of utility-scale solar facilities.
Construction of the two plants will begin in Q2 2019, with commissioning targeted for Q4. They will generate power to supply the equivalent of more than 2,000 US homes. The 15-year power purchase agreements (PPAs) have been signed with Duke Energy Progress, a subsidiary of major local utility Duke Energy.
Thorsten Blanke, head of Solar at innogy SE, said: “With Tamworth and Tanager we now realise the first two projects from our US solar development pipeline. And not just anywhere, but in North Carolina, which is expected to be a hotspot for solar due to its high solar irradiance, competitive cost environment, growing appetite for renewables and positive macroeconomic outlook.”
Innogy is also progressing its onshore wind activity in the US, having taken a Final Investment Decision (FID) for the 250MW Scioto Ridge onshore wind farm located in Hardin and Logan Counties, Ohio, last November. The company is also active in the solar space globally have recently acquired 50MW from Primus in Germany, and working on more than 100MW of subsidy-free projects in Spain and Alberta, Canada. It has also started construction of the 349MW Balnarald solar farm in New South Wales.