19-megawatt solar facility will create jobs and clean energy
SRP and Colorado-based juwi solar Inc. have signed a 20-year power purchase agreement for 19-megawatts of solar photovoltaic energy from a facility to be built in Queen Creek. SRP will purchase all of the solar energy produced at the Queen Creek power plant, which is expected to be online by the end of 2012.
The plant will utilize approximately 90,000 photovoltaic modules mounted on a single-axis tracking system that follows the sun. The solar power generated by the project will offset approximately 21,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions each year, the equivalent of taking approximately 4,100 cars off the road. The plant will require about 140 acres of land and will create approximately 150 jobs during the construction of the project.
Combined with the 20 MW Copper Crossing Solar Plant in Florence, SRP will now have nearly 40 MW of solar energy generated from utility-scale facilities in the Valley.
The Queen Creek plant, which will produce an amount of energy equal to that needed to serve about 3,300 SRP customers’ homes, will require minimal water use and supports development of the solar energy industry within Arizona. The agreement was made in response to a request for proposals and was the lowest cost solar option available.
“Not only are we adding another renewable-energy resource to our sustainable portfolio to serve the needs of our customers, we are purchasing that energy from a solar plant located in Arizona – which also benefits our economy,” said SRP General Manager Mark Bonsall.
“We are pleased to have signed a power purchase agreement with SRP and look forward to building and operating a project that supports SRP’s goals and provides benefits to the Town of Queen Creek and the State of Arizona,” said Michael Martin, CEO of juwi solar Inc.
The SRP Board has set a goal to meet 20 percent of SRP’s retail electricity requirements through sustainable resources by the year 2020. The goal increases each year until 2020 and for the most recent fiscal year, SRP exceeded the 5 percent goal providing about 7 percent of retail energy needs with sustainable resources including wind, solar and geothermal energy, hydro power and conservation and energy-efficiency measures.
SRP is the third-largest public power utility in the nation, serving nearly 950,000 electric customers in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area.