Nashville-based renewable energy provider Silicon Ranch Corporation and the Phoenix-based Renewable Energy Team of McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. announce that construction is set to begin at Silicon Ranch’s 52-Megawatt (MW)AC solar energy plant in Jeff Davis County, Georgia that will provide power at cost-competitive rates to Green Power EMC for the next thirty years.
In June, Green Power EMC and owner-operator Silicon Ranch announced their agreement for the project, which will be the second large-scale facility brought online by the partners in less than a year when it is completed later this fall. The first, a 20 MWAC facility that was officially dedicated last month, is located less than a mile from where the 52 MW plant will be built.
Jeff Pratt, President of Green Power EMC, said both projects represent a substantial commitment to renewable energy by the Electric Membership Corporations (EMCs) of Georgia. “Over thirty EMCs will share in the energy produced from these two facilities, providing renewable energy for a growing number of Georgians interested in this important technology. We are grateful for the support from our members and for the partnership we have developed with Silicon Ranch.”
Silicon Ranch selected McCarthy, one of the largest American-owned construction firms, for its extensive track record with utility-scale power projects. McCarthy is currently working with Silicon Ranch nationwide on projects in excess of 200 MW and plans to secure various local subcontractors and craftsmen to provide the bulk of on-site construction work for the 10-month project in Hazlehurst, just as it has done for all other Silicon Ranch facilities.
The solar facility’s construction, which will begin on February 1, 2016, is expected to support over 200 jobs. McCarthy will provide local workers seeking utility-scale solar construction experience with on-site training in pile driving, tracker assembly, and panel installation.
Silicon Ranch President and CEO Matt Kisber said, “At Silicon Ranch we take a long-term view of our relationships and our responsibilities as a developer, owner, operator, and partner in the communities where we do business. We are committed to using local service providers and hiring from the local labor pool as much as possible. More than 200 local workers helped to build the project we just completed, and we are excited about bringing that local experience to bear for this new project as well.”
The 52 MW array will occupy approximately 450 acres, will include technology that allows the panels to track the sun from east to west, and will produce enough electricity to serve approximately 8,500 EMC households.
“McCarthy is honored to partner with Silicon Ranch and Green Power EMC for this solar power project,” said Scott Canada, vice president of Renewable Energy at McCarthy. “We have already found the local community extremely supportive and are looking forward to working with our local partners to bring this project online.”