Scatec Solar ASA (Oslo: SSO), the integrated independent solar power producer, has formally commissioned the 104 MW (dc) photovoltaic solar plant in Parowan, Utah. The Utah Red Hills Renewable Park (URHRP) is Utah’s first utility-scale solar plant and will more than double the state’s current solar footprint. The plant was commissioned on schedule and constructed in less than a year.
When the plant is fully operational within the week, it will generate around 210 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity per year, equivalent to the electric power used by approximately 18,500 homes annually, to be fed into the grid under a twenty-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with PacifiCorp’s Rocky Mountain Power, according to the utility’s obligation under the federal Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA).
“We want to thank Scatec Solar because this experience has helped Rocky Mountain Power learn what works to help other solar projects that will be starting up soon here in Utah,” said Paul Clements, Rocky Mountain Power Director of Commercial Services. “This project is part of Rocky Mountain Power’s commitment to be good guardians of our environment and wise stewards who work to keep electricity prices at some of the lowest rates in the nation.”
“The commissioning of the Utah plant is a significant landmark for Scatec Solar. The fact that we were able to build this 104 MW plant within 12 months is the proof of our company’s capability to deploy solar power rapidly. The Utah plant also underlines the importance of delivering results and choosing partners whose core values match our own – in this case, Swinerton, Google and Prudential Capital Group. That our company is able to realize solar plants simultaneously in different continents is a tremendous tribute to our tireless and dedicated team” says Raymond Carlsen, CEO of Scatec Solar ASA.
With its sunny days and cool temperatures, Utah is one of the top seven states in the United States with the greatest potential solar capacity. In 2008, Utah enacted the Energy Resource and Carbon Emission Reduction Initiative, setting a renewable portfolio goal of 20 percent by 2025, requiring utilities to pursue renewable energy to the extent that it is cost-effective to do so. With the Red Hills project,Utah is the first state to build a solar plant greater than 80MW (ac) without a more aggressive Renewable Portfolio Standard.
Scatec Solar has been publicly recognized for its role in pioneering utility-scale solar in Utah. Utah Clean Energy recently named Scatec Solar its 2015 Clean Energy MVP for the company’s contributions to advancing clean energy solutions in Utah and the West. Specifically, the company was honored for its role in enabling Utah’s first utility-scale solar plant and for helping lead the way to enable nearly a gigawatt of renewable energy projects in Utah. The team is currently developing a second 80 MW (ac) photovoltaic solar plant in Iron County, Utah—the Three Peaks Power Plant.
“We are very proud of our role in advancing solar energy in Utah—a state with such excellent solar potential,” said Luigi Resta, CEO, Scatec Solar North America. “Utah Red Hills Renewable Park—the state’s first utility-scale solar plant—and other projects in our pipeline represent a huge step forward in bringing the sun’s clean, sustainable energy to more Utahns.”
Total investment for the plant has been estimated at USD 188 million—with Google providing tax equity, Prudential Capital Group providing debt financing, and Scatec Solar providing sponsor equity. The power plant will be wholly-owned by a partnership jointly owned by Google and Scatec Solar. Scatec Solar will manage and operate the plant.
“We are pleased to join Scatec Solar and Prudential in bringing solar energy to the state of Utah. We hope that projects like these will encourage the development of additional renewable energy throughout the state,” said Nicolas Coons, Google’s Head of Renewable Energy Investments, Developed Markets / Technologies.
“We are excited to be part of this solar transaction and have enjoyed working with Scatec Solar and Google,” said Ric Abel, managing director with Prudential Capital Group’s Energy Finance Group – Power.
Scatec Solar engaged Swinerton Renewable Energy to lead Engineering, Procurement and Construction of the ground-mounted photovoltaic solar facility that interconnects to an existing transmission line. The plant was built on approximately 632 acres of privately-owned land in Parowan, Utah, and deployed more than 340,000 PV solar modules on a single-axis tracking system.