Florida’s NextEra Energy Resources and Salt River Project, a community-based, not-for-profit public power utility based in Arizona, have partnered on the Pinal Central Solar Energy Center, a universal-scale, integrated solar plus battery storage plant.
Courtesy of Salt River Project
The 20MW solar photovoltaic generation facility, which is Arizona’s largest utility-scale solar energy center paired with a battery storage system, will generate enough solar energy to power approximately 5,000 homes and will store excess energy in a state-of-the-art 10 MW lithium-ion battery storage system.
PCSEC, comprised of 258,000 solar panels on 257 acres of land east of Casa Grande, represents the first of three grid-scale battery storage projects slated to connect to SRP’s system.
“The project’s design allows SRP to utilize solar and battery storage together to optimize clean energy output to benefit our customers,” said SRP General Manager and Chief Executive Officer Mike Hummel. “In addition, the plant will assist SRP in meeting our goals for renewable energy while reducing carbon emissions.”
SRP will purchase all of the energy produced at the plant, which is owned and operated by a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources.
“We are delighted to work with SRP to bring this innovative solar and energy storage facility online and deliver unprecedented value to its customers,” said Matt Handel, vice president of renewable development for NextEra Energy Resources.
This project brought more than 150 construction jobs to the area as well as four full-time positions. It is anticipated to generate over $7 million in additional revenue for Pinal County over its operational lifetime.
“We are excited to participate in this project,” said SRP President David Rousseau. “This is a unique opportunity for SRP to gain a better understanding of the role energy storage can play to better serve our customers as our industry continues to face dynamic changes.
The SRP Board has set a goal to meet 20 percent of SRP’s retail electricity requirements through sustainable resources by the year 2020. Currently, SRP is on schedule to meet that goal by utilizing solar, wind, geothermal and hydro power and energy-efficiency measures. Additionally, SRP set a goal to reduce the amount of carbon emissions intensity by 33 percent by 2035.