Walton Electric Membership Corporation (EMC) has signed off on contracts with two solar developers for three new PV projects as part of its agreement to supply 100% renewable energy for Facebook's data center in Newton County, Georgia.
This partnership will create the largest solar development project in Georgia.
Facebook selected Walton EMC as the power supplier for the Newton Data Center when it originally announced the 970,000 square foot facility in March.
Both Silicon Ranch and Strata Solar will construct the PV projects that will support the new data centre, with all of the installations set to be developed in Southwest Georgia.
Rachel Peterson, vice president of data center strategy for Facebook, said: “We are thrilled to be working with Walton EMC, Silicon Ranch and Strata Solar to bring more than 200MW of new solar resources to Georgia.
“We are committed to supporting all of Facebook's operations with 100% renewable energy and these new solar facilities will help us meet that goal for our Newton Data Center. Developing these resources within the same electric grid that supports our data center will bring even more investment to the region.”
Construction of the PV projects will create more than 800 jobs, with additional employment for ongoing operation and maintenance. Local labor and local contractors will fill most of these positions. The total investment of Silicon Ranch and Strata Solar will reach more than US$230 million.
Silicon Ranch’s 102.5MW PV project in Early County, Georgia will deploy the first locally-produced solar modules from Hanwha Q CELLS's new manufacturing facility in Georgia, which is also the largest in the United States.
Strata Solar’s projects in Calhoun and Colquitt Counties will have a generation capacities of 80MW and 20MW, respectively.