PSEG Solar Source, a unit of Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. or PSEG, has purchased a 6.6 megawatt-dc (“MW dc”) solar facility from BayWa r.e. Solar Projects for $12.2 million.
About the Facility
Located in Northampton County, NC, about 90 miles northeast of Raleigh, the PSEG Hemlock Solar Energy Center is currently under construction and scheduled to start commercial operations by 2016 end. It is situated on an area of 48 acres under a 35-year lease with a private landowner. The facility has a 15-year power purchase agreement with Virginia Electric and Power Co. a subsidiary of Dominion Resources (NYSE:D) .
The engineering, procurement and construction contractor of the facility is BayWa r.e. Once complete, it will operate the project for PSEG Solar Source. It will be powered by around 20,500 poly-crystalline Trina Solar Ltd. (NYSE:TSL) panels with SMA inverters.
About PSEG Solar Source
PSEG Solar Source is a subsidiary of PSEG Power, a merchant power generation company which forms part of the PSEG family of companies. Currently, it has 20 utility-scale projects across 13 states. The company has 215 MW-dc in operation and 135 MW-dc under construction and scheduled begin operations by 2016 end.
PSEG Solar Source has two other solar facilities in North Carolina − the PSEG Turkey Creek Solar Center, which is under construction in Northampton County; and the PSEG Meadows Solar Center in Martin County, which commenced operations this June.
PSEG’s Renewable Endeavors
PSEG is focused on expanding its renewable assets. The company invests huge amounts in clean energy projects. Notably, PSEG Solar Source has plans to build solar projects in Colorado, North Carolina and Utah, thereby boosting its portfolio to reach 315 MW of clean, renewable energy, through 17 facilities in 12 states. The company plans to invest $215 million in solar and energy efficiency programs between 2016 and 2018.
Scope of Renewable Energy
Regulations pertaining to pollution control are becoming increasingly stringent, making it crucial for utilities to spend more on emission control infrastructure. Meanwhile, because of their clean-burning nature, investment in the renewable energy space could prove to be profitable over the long run. In particular, solar energy, which presently contributes to only 1% of the total electricity generation in the U.S., represents ample scope of improvement in the days to come.
Zacks Rank & a Key Pick
PSEG currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked stock in the same industry is Hawaiian Electric Industries Inc. (NYSE:HE) carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Hawaiian Electric witnessed a 1.7% rise in its stock price in the last five days. On an average, the company recorded a positive earnings surprise of 2.38% in the four trailing quarters.