Green Power EMC, the renewable energy provider for 38 Georgia Electric Membership Corporations, and Silicon Ranch, an independent solar power producer and the U.S. solar platform for Shell, completed a 200-MWac solar portfolio that includes three utility-scale projects in southern Georgia.
The total capacity is distributed across two counties in the southwestern and southeastern parts of the state and provides enough low-cost, renewable energy to serve more than 35,000 EMC households.
Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan said that the commissioning of this solar portfolio demonstrates the continued dedication of Georgia’s cooperatives in being leaders in renewable energy while making a positive difference in the communities they serve. “EMCs maintain a balanced and diverse portfolio to meet the energy needs of Georgia’s consumers — and that includes innovative sources like solar,” Duncan said. “They’ve harnessed Georgia’s natural resources to power our homes, drive economic development and provide hundreds of jobs in construction and installation.”
The three projects were commissioned on schedule and collectively completed the portfolio first announced by the partners in 2017. The three solar sites were developed, funded and built by Silicon Ranch, which also owns, operates, and maintains the arrays throughout the lifecycle of each facility. Green Power EMC is purchasing all the energy and environmental attributes generated by the facilities on behalf of its Member EMCs for the next 30 years.
The first site, known as Hazlehurst III, came online in December 2019 and is a 40-MWac facility located in Jeff Davis County. In August 2020, Silicon Ranch commissioned the second site, the 74-MWac Terrell Solar Farm, in Terrell County. In December 2020, the partners commissioned the third and final site in the portfolio, Snipesville I, an 86-MWac facility also located in Jeff Davis County. The projects will contribute significant tax revenues for the two counties, which will benefit local economies, governments, and school systems for years to come.
Rep. Gerald Greene, of House District 151 that includes Terrell and eight other counties, is proud that neighbors in his community helped build these solar projects.
“The cooperatives’ commitment to South Georgia means our community develops expertise in solar,” said Representative Greene. “That means jobs, investments and long-term benefits for Terrell County, and our entire region.”
Thirty-two of Georgia’s EMCs share in the three facilities’ power production. By working together, Georgia’s cooperatives have been able to take advantage of economies of scale, resulting in lower-cost solar power — savings that are passed on to their member-consumers.
“Silicon Ranch is honored by the confidence and trust that Green Power EMC and its member EMCs continue to place in our company to execute on their behalf,” said Matt Beasley, CCO of Silicon Ranch. “One of our guiding principles is that ‘we do what we say we will do,’ and we want to thank all of our project partners, including Green Power EMC, Georgia Transmission Corporation and our friends in Jeff Davis County and Terrell County, for helping us to keep our promises and for enabling us to make these significant investments in communities across the state.”
News item from Green Power EMC