Commissioning Event Celebrates Operation of 179 Megawatt Switch Station 1 and Switch Station 2 Solar Projects in Apex, Nevada
Utility-Scale Solar Power Plant Delivers 100% Clean, Renewable Energy to Switch Data Centers in Nevada
U.S. Senator Harry Reid, U.S Bureau of Land Management Nevada Director, John Ruhs, Clark County Commissioner Chairman Steve Sisolak, Nevada State Energy Office Director Angela Dykema and other federal, state and local leaders joined executives from Switch, EDF Renewable Energy, NV Energy, J.P. Morgan and First Solar, Inc. to ceremonially “throw the switch” marking the delivery of solar power to Switch data centers in Las Vegas and Reno.
APEX, Nev. — Switch Station 1 and Switch Station 2 solar power plants, with a combined generation capacity of 179 MWac, were formally recognized today as fully commissioned and in commercial operation at a celebration attended by government officials, project owners and the energy offtaker.
U.S. Senator Harry Reid, U.S Bureau of Land Management Nevada Director, John Ruhs, Clark County Commissioner Chairman Steve Sisolak, Nevada State Energy Office Director Angela Dykema and other federal, state and local leaders joined executives from Switch, EDF Renewable Energy, NV Energy, J.P. Morgan and First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) to ceremonially “throw the switch” marking the delivery of solar power to Switch data centers in Las Vegas and Reno. The Switch Station 1 and Switch Station 2 projects are helping Switch meet its commitment to power its facilities with 100 percent clean energy.
Power generated by the plants, owned by EDF Renewable Energy (EDF RE), will be provided to Switch through Power Purchase Agreements with subsidiaries of NV Energy, Inc. (Nevada Power Company d/b/a NV Energy and Sierra Pacific Power Company d/b/a NV Energy).
“Less than a decade ago, Nevada’s solar energy landscape was nonexistent, but this commissioning helps fulfill the vision I had to make our state the leader in renewable energy development,” said U.S. Senator Harry Reid. “A technology giant like Switch committing to using 100% renewable energy is truly visionary and grows our clean energy economy by creating hundreds of good-paying labor construction jobs here.”
“Technology is revolutionizing the way renewable, clean energy is produced, delivered and consumed and we are proud to be leaders in driving that change,” said Switch Executive Vice President of Strategy Adam Kramer. “Switch Station 1 and Switch Station 2 reflect our company’s bedrock value of ensuring the data that runs our planet does not ruin our planet by building new, local, renewable energy resources.”
Located in Clark County, Nevada the Switch Station solar projects are the first-ever utility-scale solar power plants to be built in one of the Bureau of Land Management’s Solar Energy Zones. First Solar, the nation’s largest developer of utility-scale solar projects, acquired the land to construct the facility through a lease auction in 2014. EDF Renewable Energy, a leading U.S. independent power producer, acquired the Switch Station projects from First Solar to complement its existing portfolio of renewable energy projects in the United States, Canada and Mexico.
“I am proud to participate in the dedication of Switch Station 1 and Switch Station 2 solar projects. This is another great example of the Federal Government and private industry collaborating on improving our nation’s energy independence and infrastructure under the auspices of multiple use of our shared public lands,” said John Ruhs, BLM Nevada State Director.
“The project represents another clear demonstration of EDF RE’s ambition in the solar business and also our first opportunity in Nevada, a state with world-class solar resources,” said Cliff Graham, Vice President, U.S. Development for EDF Renewable Energy. “EDF RE is positioned to invest $3 billion between now and 2020 in renewable projects across the country; we anticipate to deliver on our projection and bring more jobs, tax dollars and investment to Nevada.”
“Between 2005 and 2015, Nevada tripled its in-state renewable energy production and reduced carbon emissions in the electricity sector by 44 percent,” said Dave Ulozas, NV Energy Senior Vice President of Renewable Resources. “These two important Switch Station projects are two of 16 solar resources that are currently meeting the needs of our customers and companies here in Nevada, and NV Energy has more planned for the future.”
Following an expedited permitting process, construction of the project took approximately 12 months, creating about 550,000 workhours, and had a total construction workforce of 1,300. Combined, the power plants cover about 1,797 acres and are comprised of 1,980,840 solar panels, the equivalent of 275 football fields, and 5,450,056 feet of cable, equaling 1,032 miles or the distance from Las Vegas to Seattle. The 179 MW of power generates enough clean solar energy to meet the consumption of 46,000 homes, displacing approximately 265,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) annually, equal to taking about 52,000 cars off the road.
“The Switch Station solar projects are a great example of how our commitment to renewable energy has helped to stimulate economic growth in the County. The solar projects created hundreds of construction jobs and economic benefits, and the use of our abundant natural resources are fueling long-term, high-tech job creation centers such as Switch,” said Steve Sisolak, Chairman of the Clark County Commission.
“This project confirms that solar energy is now available and priced competitively with other energy sources that rely on carbon-based fuels,” said Kathryn Arbeit, Vice President of Project Development Americas for First Solar. “Our photovoltaic technology is setting the standard for affordable, clean, renewable energy. By continuously innovating, we are driving down the cost of solar electricity and providing a solution that addresses energy security and water scarcity. We are thrilled to continue working with our partners to deliver on our joint commitment to build a more sustainable energy future.”
About First Solar, Inc.
First Solar is a leading global provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV) solar systems which use its advanced module and system technology. The company’s integrated power plant solutions deliver an economically attractive alternative to fossil-fuel electricity generation today. From raw material sourcing through end-of-life module recycling, First Solar’s renewable energy systems protect and enhance the environment. www.firstsolar.com
For First Solar Investors
This release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant to safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include statements, among other things, concerning: effects on our financial statements and guidance resulting from certain module manufacturing changes and associated restructuring activities; our business strategy, including anticipated trends and developments in and management plans for our business and the markets in which we operate; future financial results, operating results, revenues, gross margin, operating expenses, products, projected costs (including estimated future module collection and recycling costs), warranties, solar module technology and cost reduction roadmaps, restructuring, product reliability, investments in unconsolidated affiliates and capital expenditures; our ability to continue to reduce the cost per watt of our solar modules; the impact of public policies, such as tariffs or other trade remedies imposed on solar cells and modules; our ability to expand manufacturing capacity worldwide; our ability to reduce the costs to construct PV solar power systems; research and development programs and our ability to improve the conversion efficiency of our solar modules; sales and marketing initiatives; and competition. These forward-looking statements are often characterized by the use of words such as “estimate,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “project,” “plan,” “intend,” “seek,” “believe,” “forecast,” “foresee,” “likely,” “may,” “should,” “goal,” “target,” “might,” “will,” “could,” “predict,” “continue” and the negative or plural of these words and other comparable terminology. Forward-looking statements are only predictions based on our current expectations and our projections about future events. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements for any reason. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, the matters discussed in Item 1A “Risk Factors,” of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
POWERING THE FUTURE OF THE CONNECTED WORLD® – Switch (NYSE: SWCH) the technology infrastructure corporation headquartered in Las Vegas, is built on the intelligent and sustainable growth of the internet. Switch founder and CEO Rob Roy has developed more than 400 issued and pending patent claims covering data center designs that have manifested into the company’s world-renowned data centers and technology solution ecosystems. Visit switch.com for more information.
About EDF Renewable Energy
EDF Renewable Energy is a leading US independent power producer with over 30 years of expertise in the renewable industry, covering all range of services from project origination, development, sales and marketing, to long-term asset management. EDF Renewable Energy specializes in wind and solar photovoltaic with presence in other segments of the renewable energy market: distributed electricity, storage, biogas, and biomass. EDF Renewable Energy’s North American portfolio consists of 9 gigawatts of developed projects with 4.4 gigawatts of installed capacity throughout the US, Canada, and Mexico. The operations and maintenance subsidiary, EDF Renewable Services, operates 13 gigawatts globally. EDF Renewable Energy is a subsidiary of EDF Energies Nouvelles. EDF Energies Nouvelles is the renewable energy arm of the EDF group, the leading electricity company in the world. For more information visit: www.edf-re.com
About NV Energy
NV Energy, Inc., provides a wide range of energy services to 1.3 million customers throughout Nevada and more than 40 million tourists annually. NV Energy is a holding company whose principal subsidiaries, Nevada Power Company and Sierra Pacific Power Company, do business as NV Energy. NV Energy is headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada. Information about NV Energy is available on the company’s website, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube pages, which can be accessed via nvenergy.com
About J.P. Morgan’s Corporate & Investment Bank
J.P. Morgan’s Corporate & Investment Bank is a global leader across banking, markets and investor services. The world’s most important corporations, governments and institutions entrust us with their business in more than 100 countries. With $22.7 trillion of assets under custody and $421.6 billion in deposits, the Corporate & Investment Bank provides strategic advice, raises capital, manages risk and extends liquidity in markets around the world. Further information about J.P. Morgan is available at www.jpmorgan.com.