Devil went down to Georgia for $89 million of solar power


Silicon Ranch has secured a 30-year PPA with Green Power EMC, the renewable energy supplier for 38 electric cooperatives in Georgia, to sell 106 MW-AC of solar power at two plants. Silicon Ranch will own, operate, and maintain the facilities throughout the agreement.

This deal between Silicon Ranch and Green Power EMC will expand to four plants – for a total of 194 MW-AC – in time. The facilities are scheduled to come online by the end of 2021.

Already, Green Power EMC and Silicon Ranch have commissioned two solar facilities together. There are plans to bring up to eight plants online, including the two announced, over the next four years. Green Power EMC, as of the end of 2017, had brought online 283 MW of solar power.

Silicon Ranch is owned by Shell, and when they initially announced the beginnings of this deal back in June, Shell’s VP of solar seemed to give strong financial backing to their solar department:

Georgia is one of the fastest-growing solar markets in the United States, which is itself the second-largest solar market in the world. Shell is committed to invest $1 billion to $2 billion annually through our New Energies division, and our investment in Silicon Ranch is a key element of this strategy.

At pricing similar to $89 million for 106 MW-AC (84¢/W), $1-2 billion a year would fund approximately 1.2 GW-AC to 2.4 GW-AC of solar power. If we take a standard 25% oversizing, then the DC cost of these projects might fall to 67¢/W-DC, and we’d be getting 1.5 GW-DC to 3.0 GW-DC from that oil money.

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