The Tennessee Valley Authority has entered into a 20-year power purchase agreement with
Elora Solar LLC, an affiliate of NextEra Energy Resources LLC, to purchase the electric
power generated by a proposed solar photovoltaic facility in Lincoln County, Tennessee.
The proposed Elora Solar Energy Center would be constructed and operated by Elora Solar
and would have alternating current generating capacity of up to megawatts. To
interconnect to TVA’s existing electrical grid, Elora Solar would build the new Elora Solar
161-kV transmission line that would connect the proposed on-site Elora Solar 161-kV
Switching Station to TVA’s proposed Mann Road 161-kV Switching Station at the northern
extent of the new transmission line. TVA would connect the new Mann Road 161-kV
Switching State to TVA’s existing Winchester-Fayetteville 161-kV Transmission Line and
install fiber-optic overhead ground wire on this existing Transmission Line. Under the
terms of the conditional PPA, TVA would purchase the electric output from the solar facility
for an initial term of 20 years, subject to satisfactory completion of all applicable
Elora Solar would acquire approximately 1,702 acres of land in Lincoln County, and
construct, operate, and maintain a single axis tracking photovoltaic solar power
facility of up to 150 megawatts alternating current generating capacity. TVA would
purchase the power facility of up to 150 megawatts alternating current generating
capacity. TVA would purchase the power generated as agreed under this option.
The Tennessee Valley Authority has signed off on an agreement with a pair of PV
developers to develop the largest solar installations in Tennessee and Alabama at
150MW and 227MW, respectively.
The energy output from these installations will be used to help support Facebook’s data center in Huntsville, Alabama with 100% renewable energy sources.
John Bradley, TVA’s senior vice president of economic development, said: “TVA’s commitment to the environment and our diverse portfolio are among the top reasons why businesses choose to relocate to the Valley. TVA’s ability to deliver large amounts of renewable, reliable energy at competitive rates makes the Valley and attractive place to do business and recruit quality jobs.”
Back in 2017, the TVA issued a Request for Proposals in conjunction with Facebook in order to land a large source of PV energy.
As part of the agreement, First Solar will develop the 227MW installation in Colbert County, Alabama, while NextEra Energy Resources will develop a 150MW project in Lincoln County, Tennessee. TVA is planning to invest eight billion dollars in renewable energy over the next 20 years.
Doug Perry, TVA vice president of commercial energy solutions, said: “This announcement demonstrates TVA’s commitment to invest in renewable energy that attracts high-paying jobs to benefit the communities we serve. This partnership aligns the core values of TVA’s public power model with Facebook’s mission to bring the world closer together – powered by renewable energy.”
Perry added: “Solar power has a bright future for families in the Tennessee Valley if we can continue to attract top-tier companies like Facebook.”