Iowa project goes online, boosting state’s solar market


Idaho-based developer Clenera flipped the switch on its 127.5 MW, $100 million Wapello Solar project in Louisa County, Iowa.

Located in far eastern Iowa, Wapello Solar is now among the largest projects in the Hawkeye State, almost doubling the state’s previously recorded solar total. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, Iowa had about 150 MW and ranked 38th in the nation for installed solar capacity as of the fourth quarter of 2020.

The project features 318,000 bifacial solar panels supplied by Risen Energy that are fixed to FTC Solar’s Voyager single-axis trackers, which are optimized for bifacial performance. The project covers nearly 800 acres and includes 34 SunGrow inverters.

Besides acting as project developer, Clenera will provide ongoing asset management. The company partnered with RES (Renewable Energy Systems) to build the project in six months.

Central Iowa Power Cooperative (CIPCO) will buy the project’s output through a 25-year power purchase agreement.

Clenera said its current operating portfolio exceeds 1.4 GW, with more than 13 GW of solar and energy storage assets in development across the U.S.

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