Consumer-owned utility Walton Electric Membership Corporation (EMC) and independent power producer (IPP) Silicon Ranch have completed the construction of three utility-scale solar PV projects with a total capacity of 287MW that will be used to power Meta’s (formerly Facebook) operations in Georgia, US.
Silicon Ranch, which oil and gas giant Shell has a minority stake in, funded the construction of the projects and will own, operate, and maintain the site. They are in counties in the south-western and south-eastern parts of the state.
It partnered with Infrastructure and Energy Alternatives (IEA) to construct the 100MW Lumpkin Solar Farm, located in Stewart County, and McCarthy Building Companies to build both the 80MW Lancaster Solar Farm in Colquitt County and the 107MW Snipesville II Solar Farm in Jeff Davis County.
The solar plants are part of an ongoing collaboration between Walton EMC and Silicon Ranch to supply renewable energy to Meta’s data centre in Newton County, Georgia.
Walton EMC and Silicon Ranch have now completed the installation of six projects totalling 435MW on behalf of Meta.
With the first six solar projects now in commercial operation, Silicon Ranch has begun construction of the partners’ seventh project together, the 125MW DeSoto I Solar Farm located in Lee County, which the company hopes to complete before the end of next year.
Once complete, DeSoto I will bring the total capacity of the partners’ portfolio to 560MW of renewable generation in Georgia.
“Silicon Ranch has now invested more than half a billion dollars across half a dozen counties to help our partners meet their renewable energy goals,” said its co-founder and CEO Reagan Farr.
Each project in Silicon Ranch’s portfolio employs “a holistic approach to design, construction, and operations that co-locates renewable energy production with regenerative agriculture practices”, the company said in a media release.
In October, the company acquired Clearloop, a start-up that helps companies offset their carbon emissions by funding new solar projects.