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Date: 25 June 2020
Renewables Alert

DOMINION SEEKING WIND, SOLAR, AND STORAGE BIDS TO MEET VIRGINIA’S RENEWABLE ENERGY TARGETS

Dominion Energy Inc. is seeking bids for asset purchase and power purchase agreements for up to 1 GW of solar and wind power and 250 MW of battery storage in Virginia.

The notices of intent to bid were due on May 18, 2020, with final asset purchase and power purchase proposals due on September 1, 2020, and March 1, 2021, respectively.

The outreach is intended to help Dominion meet the targets outlined in Virginia’s recently enacted Clean Economy Act, aiming for 100% renewable by 2050, as reported in ReNEWS Southeast Volume 15.

Also, in furtherance of those goals, Dominion’s Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind project remains on schedule as the groundwork is being laid to begin construction in 2024.

BAYWA r.e. SECURES TAX EQUITY AND CONSTRUCTION FINANCING FOR 133 MW SOLAR PROJECT IN NORTH CAROLINA

BayWa r.e. recently obtained tax equity investment commitment and construction financing for its Fern Solar project in Edgecombe County, North Carolina.

Six major US companies will receive green energy from the project by way of a market-first multi-party virtual power purchase agreement.

The Fern Solar project is anticipated to be commissioned later in 2020 and will be comprised of 353,276 solar panels and 42 inverters, which will produce enough electricity to power close to 20,000 homes.

LARGE VIRGINIA SOLAR POWER PROJECT SECURES $350M IN FUNDING

The Spotsylvania Solar Energy Center (SSES), a 620 MW DC power project in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, has secured $350 million in tax equity funding. The sole investor in the project is Wells Fargo’s Renewable Energy & Environment Finance group. The project will be the largest solar center on the east coast. The SSES is under construction, with certain phases expected to be online in 2020 and completed by the summer of 2021.

The SSES project developer is sPower, a Utah-based renewable energy full-suite utility-scale developer. The company described the investment by Wells Fargo as a milestone that is a further step toward Virginia’s green energy goals, particularly those outlined in the Virginia Clean Economy Act. Wells Fargo described the project as helping to “accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy,” which is one of its corporate responsibility goals for 2020. In addition, Wells Fargo aims to “provide $65 million to critical environmental needs” and “enhance the environmental performance of our operations.”

VIRGINIA STATE CORPORATION COMMISSION AUTHORIZES PRE-REGISTRATIONS FOR NEW INCREASED CAPACITY UNDER STATE THIRD-PARTY PPA PILOT PROGRAM

On May 7, 2020, the Virginia State Corporation Commission (VSCC) issued an order (the May 7 Order) authorizing pre-registrations for the next phase of its third-party PPA Pilot Program.

The program, initially created by 2013 legislation, allows owners or operators of solar or wind generating facilities to enter into third-party PPAs after submitting a Notice of Intent to VSCC and to the applicable utility. Customers in the territory of Virginia Electric and Power Company (Dominion) and Appalachian Power Company (APCo) are eligible, but the program has been capped at an aggregate capacity of 50 MW in Dominion territory and 7 MW in APCo territory. The Virginia Clean Economy Act, enacted earlier in the 2020 session, increases those caps to 500 MW for Dominion Virginia jurisdictional customers and 500 MW for non-jurisdictional customers, and 40 MW for APCo service territory.

Although the increased capacity is not available until July 1, 2020, the VSCC staff has already received a great deal of interest. As a consequence, the May 7 Order allows applicants to pre-register for up to 3MW per registrant, up to a cumulative total of 125 MW for Dominion jurisdictional customers, 125 MW for Dominion non-jurisdictional customers, and 10 MW for APCo customers.

This publication/newsletter is for informational purposes and does not contain or convey legal advice. The information herein should not be used or relied upon in regard to any particular facts or circumstances without first consulting a lawyer. Any views expressed herein are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the law firm's clients.

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