Commercial, Solar, Sourcing Renewables - April 10, 2017
Toyota ups size of onsite solar at North American HQ
Installation of an 8.79-megawatt SunPower solar energy system is underway at Toyota Motor North America's new headquarters in Plano, Texas. Image courtesy of Axium Solar.
Construction has begun on a 8.79 MW behind-the-meter solar installation at Toyota Motor North America's new headquarters in Plano, Texas, which the automaker plans to occupy this year.
Close to 1 MW larger than originally planned, the project it is expected to be the largest corporate office onsite solar installation among nonutility companies in Texas, according to an April 10 news release from SunPower. The system is expected to generate enough clean energy to offset approximately 33% of the headquarters' energy needs, reducing Toyota's reliance on traditional electricity from the grid.
Toyota is financing the SunPower solar project installed at the location through a power purchase agreement arranged by SunPower that allows the company buy power at competitive rates — acting as a hedge against future utility rate increases — with no upfront capital cost, according to the news release. Toyota will own the renewable energy credits associated with the system.
In June 2016, Toyota Motor Corp. announced it had activated unique retail electricity supply contract, with provisions for both onsite and offsite renewable power at the new North American headquarters.
Toyota's U.S. solar projects include three other SunPower systems: a 1.5-MW system at Toyota's facility in West Caldwell, N.J.; a 2.3-MW system that provides up to 58% of the electricity needed at the Toyota North American parts center in Ontario, Calif; and an installation at Toyota's South Campus headquarters building in Torrance, Calif., which opened in 2003.