Enel, through its US renewable subsidiary Enel Green Power North America, has begun operating a 50 MW expansion of the High Lonesome wind farm in Upton and Crockett Counties, in Texas, increasing the largest operational wind project in the Group’s global
renewable portfolio to 500 MW. The company also connected to the grid its 105 MW Riverview and 29.4 MW Castle Rock Ridge II wind farms in Alberta, Canada.
“The commissioning of these three new wind farms is further evidence that Enel remains committed to growing its renewable portfolio worldwide,” said Antonio Cammisecra, CEO of Enel Green Power. “This commitment has also been underscored by the completion of over 400 MW of renewable plants worldwide in the first quarter of the year, allowing renewables to greatly exceed conventional generation in our portfolio both in terms of capacity and production. While prioritizing health and safety, looking ahead we will continue generating new sustainable value through our emission-free energy across the globe, in accordance with the Group’s Strategic Plan.”
The investment in the construction of the 500 MW High Lonesome wind farm in Texas amounts to around 720 million US dollars. The total investment for Castle Rock Ridge II and Riverview amounts to over 210 million Canadian dollars.
The 500 MW High Lonesome facility is due to generate around 1.9 TWh annually while avoiding the emission of more than 1.2 million tons of CO2 per year. The project was expanded by the 50 MW that were just connected to the grid thanks to a 12-year, renewable energy power purchase agreement (PPA) announced in December 2019 with food and beverage company Danone North America, a Public Benefit Corporation and the world’s largest certified B Corporation®1, for physical delivery of the renewable electricity associated with a 20.6 MW portion of the 50 MW High Lonesome expansion. The agreement between Enel and Danone North America will provide enough electricity to produce the equivalent of almost 800 million cups of yogurt and over 80 million gallons of milk each year and support the food and beverage company’s commitment to securing 100% of its purchased electricity from renewable sources
In Texas, Enel currently operates the 63 MW Snyder wind farm in Scurry County and the first 252 MW phase of the Roadrunner solar plant in Upton County. The second 245 MW phase of the Roadrunner solar plant is currently under construction and, once completed, Roadrunner will be one of the largest solar plants in the state.
The Castle Rock Ridge II and Riverview wind farms will supply their net power output and renewable energy credits to the Alberta Electric System Operator (“AESO”) under two 20-year Renewable Ener Support Agreements (“RESAs”), awarded in 2017 through a tender launched by AESO. Located in the town of Pincher Creek, the wind farms are expected to generate around 493 GWh annually, avoiding approximately 335,500 tons of CO2 emissions per year. In the country, Enel Green Power also operates the 76.2 MW Castle Rock Ridge I wind farm in Pincher Creek, which began operations in 2012, for an overall portfolio of more than 210 MW in Canada.
The construction process for High Lonesome, Riverview and Castle Rock Ridge II followed Enel Green Power’s Sustainable Construction Site model, a collection of best practices aimed at minimizing the impact of plant construction on the environment. This includes recycling paper, cardboard, aluminum, ink cartridges, oil and grease, along with the use of solar-powered lights and reusable water containers for workers. In the final stages of construction, Enel closely monitored the emergent COVID-19 pandemic and responded to protect the health of its workers and the community. While abiding by the guidance of public officials, the company implemented strict travel guidelines and enhanced sanitation, as crews implemented safe working habits and physical distancing instructions. Furthermore, Enel North America announced over 1.3 million US dollars in contributions to relief efforts across the US and Canada.
Enel Green Power has three projects under construction in the United States, namely the 236.5 MW White Cloud wind project in Missouri, the 299 MW Aurora wind project in North Dakota and the aforementioned 245 MW second phase of the Roadrunner solar project in Texas. These projects represent a substantial portion of Enel Green Power’s expected 1 GW growth in the US and Canada in 2020.
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