Utilities, Commercial, Solar, Sourcing Renewables - June 13, 2016
Wal-Mart moves closer to renewable power goals with utility solar deal
Owed to a new deal with Alabama Power, Wal-Mart Inc. is a little closer to meeting their renewable energy targets.
The giant retailer has entered into long-term contract with Southern Co. subsidiary Alabama Power for the renewable energy credits associated with a new, 72-MW photovoltaic solar facility in the eastern part of Alabama, according to a June 9 news release from the utility. The state's Public Service Commission approved the contracts earlier that day.
Under a long-term contract with Alabama Power, Wal-Mart will subscribe to a majority of the solar facility’s RECs, which will be retired on Wal-Mart’s behalf. Alabama Power said it will market the remaining RECs to other customers who have an interest in renewable energy.
In a statement, Wal-Mart's senior director of energy praised the cooperation of Alabama Power in getting the deal through, characterizing it as a milestone..
"We feel utilities can play a key role in helping meet these ambitious goals, and this is truly a landmark agreement as we continue to evolve into a more environmentally sustainable company – in Alabama and across the globe,” David Ozmen said.
Alabama Power said in their news release:
This is the third renewable energy project approved by the PSC under a program put in place last year. That program, also approved by the PSC, gives Alabama Power the flexibility to secure up to 500 megawatts of renewable generation through 2021. To qualify under the program, a proposed project must be expected to provide positive net benefit for all Alabama Power customers over its lifetime. The program allows Alabama Power to work directly with customers who are interested in renewable energy to help them meet their needs while protecting Alabama Power’s broader customer base from any additional costs related to renewable projects.
Origis Energy will build and operate the facility, which is expected to cost $140 million. Construction on the project is expected to start later this year.
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