SRP plans to add more solar energy annually by 2025

Salt River Project plans to add 1,000 megawatts of new utility-scale solar energy to its system by the end of fiscal year 2025.

According to a press release, the plan will accelerate the pace and total capacity of SRP’s current solar energy resource plans by 700 MW compared to current resource plans during the same time.

SRP will have more than 1,200 MW of solar energy capacity and will look to install more battery capacity to complement the solar energy.

“This proposal represents a growing commitment to sustainability that is both reliable and affordable,” said SRP General Manager Mike Hummel in a prepared statement. “It focuses on investments in utility-scale solar projects that have higher solar capture efficiencies and therefore provide optimal value for our customers.”

Mr. Hummel added that the costs for solar energy continue to decrease, making it the right time to increase investments, in addition to a recent study determining that SRP’s grid is prepared to handle the addition of 1,000 MW of solar power.

SRP will add approximately 200 MW of new solar annually through 2025, which will allow for an analysis of the impact to the reliability of SRP’s electrical grid and provide operational experience, the release stated.

“We are continually working toward a more sustainable future as well as reducing our carbon footprint for the benefit of SRP’s customers and the communities we serve,” said SRP President David Rousseau in a prepared statement. “This plan affirms our commitment in a manner that brings the most value to our customers while providing the greatest environmental impact.”

SRP will examine programs to allocate the new solar capacity to various customer groups, including community solar for residential customers.

Adding 1,000 MW of solar energy is expected to reduce SRP’s carbon dioxide emissions by about 5.2 million tons, which is the equivalent produced by more than 1 million passenger cars driven in a year, the release said.

SRP will focus on strategic locations and benefits for the new solar capacity accommodating customer growth. The 1,000 MW of solar energy planned is in addition to SRP’s 200 MW of existing solar resources including several large Valley-based solar energy facilities and areas, the release noted.

The Queen Creek Independent is mailed each month to 24,000 homes.

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