US ROUND-UP: Dominion snaps up Virginia solar, Generac seals BayWa r.e. storage deal

Image: Dominion Energy.

A round-up of the latest news from the US, where Dominion Energy acquires a solar facility in Virginia and BayWa r.e incorporates Generac’s PWRcell battery system to its distribution offering.


Dominion Energy snaps up 62.5MW solar project in Virginia

17 August 2020: US utility Dominion Energy has acquired the 62.5MW Madison Solar facility in Orange County, Virginia, from Cypress Creek Renewables.

The project, which will be owned by Dominion’s contracted assets arm, is expected to enter service in the second quarter of 2022. Defence firm Northrop Grumman Corporation will take the electricity generated at Madison Solar as well as the renewable energy credits under long-term agreements.

“If we can help our customers – both large and small – add more renewables and provide cleaner electricity that's a win for our customers and the Commonwealth of Virginia,” said Robert Blue, Dominion co-chief operating officer.

As part of the Virginia Clean Economy Act's requirement for zero-carbon electricity by 2045, over the next 15 years, Dominion Energy plans to add about 16GW of solar generating capacity through company-owned projects and power purchase agreements signed with third-party developers.

In May, the company issued a request for proposals for 1GW of onshore wind and solar, including proposals for up to 250MW of energy storage.


BayWa r.e and Generac partner for residential storage solution

18 August 2020: BayWa r.e will add Generac's PWRcell battery system to its US distribution offering as part of a new partnership announced by the companies yesterday.

In a move to address the growing demand from consumers for solar-plus-storage solutions, BayWa r.e has incorporated both Generac's PWRcell and integrated energy storage systems to its distribution line card for its nationwide network of residential solar contractors.

Generac recently introduced new products and capabilities to its PWRcell storage portfolio, which will be available to BayWa r.e. customers. The offering includes the PWRcell ATS whole-home load management and backup power system, high-capacity modular batteries rated up to 34kWH, increased inverter power and an outdoor-rated enclosure.

David Dunlap, VP of operations for BayWa r.e. Solar Systems, said the company was drawn to Generac’s brand recognition and training programmes. “Generac is a highly bankable partner with a well-designed, integrated energy storage solution, which broadens our residential storage offerings,” he said.

For Generac, the deal comes days after it formed a strategic partnership with Momentum Solar that will enable the US residential PV installer to provide its energy storage systems to homeowners.


Recurrent Energy starts work on 144MW Texas solar facility

18 August 2020: Canadian Solar subsidiary Recurrent Energy has commenced construction of the 144MW Pflugerville Solar Project located in Travis County, Texas.

To support the development, Recurrent Energy recently closed debt and tax equity financing totalling over US$234 million. Canadian Solar CEO Shawn Qu said the groundbreaking represents an “incredible accomplishment” given the ongoing financing and construction challenges due to COVID-19.

A power purchase agreement for the project was already signed between Recurrent and Austin Energy in 2018 to provide solar power to the utility's customers for 15 years following the start of operations. Austin Energy, which serves more than 500,000 customers in Austin and the surrounding area, is planning to exit its coal-fired power generation by the end of 2022.

By partnering with Austin Energy on the Pflugerville park, Recurrent Energy is further expanding its footprint in Texas. Last month, the company closed US$282 million of debt financing to construct its Maplewood and Maplewood 2 solar parks, located in Pecos County, west Texas. 

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