Enel adds 2 GW of North America renewable capacity in 2022


Enel North America announced it brought online 1.98 GW of utility-scale solar and wind projects in the United States and Canada last year. The buildout included 550 MW of new demand response capacity and 119 MW of distributed energy storage deployed or under contract in 2022. 

The year’s progress was made possible through the development of large projects like Blue Jay solar in Texas (270 MW), 25 Mile Creek wind in Oklahoma (250 MW), and many others. 

Combined, the new projects represent over $200 million in new property tax revenues for local communities and over $210 million in landowner payments over the projects expected lifetimes. 

Also in 2022, Enel signed 12 power purchase agreements (PPA) with high-profile customers like Campbell Soup Company, McDonald’s, and Thermo Fisher Scientific. Its PPA business totaled 650 MW for the year. 

The company also attached virtual PPAs to its 25 Mile Creek project, with Verizon signing for 100 MW of capacity, The Clorox Company for 47 MW, and MathWorks for 11 MW. 

In November 2022, Enel announced plans to invest about $5 billion in the North American market, with the aim to develop approximately 5 GW of new utility-scale renewable and battery energy storage capacity through 2025. The company said it intends to add 155 MW of distributed energy storage and 475,000 charging ports by 2025. 

The growth was, “thanks in part to major policy action and high market demand,” said Enrico Viale, head of Enel North America. “We feel a sense of urgency to usher in large-scale clean power plants together with other energy solutions that advance our society toward full decarbonization,” he said.

New business units

Last November, Enel announced it will build a 3 GW solar module production line in the U.S. The bifacial solar module and cell manufacturing facility comes with plans to scale up production at the facility to 6 GW per year.

Construction at the yet undisclosed location is to begin in the first half of 2023, with production anticipated by late 2024. The facility is expected to create up to 1,500 new full-time jobs and supports the domestic solar PV supply chain. The proposed facility will be Enel’s second global PV manufacturing facility. The company previously announced the expansion of its 3Sun gigafactory in Catania, Sicily, increasing production capacity from 200 MW to 3 GW.

The company also introduced several new business lines to meet the evolving needs of the energy transition. It announced Enel X Way, a business focused on the buildout of electric vehicle charging networks and services.

The company will support the rapidly expanding demand for electric vehicle charging infrastructure with its portfolio of technologies, including the JuiceBox, winner of the “Best EV Charger Overall for 2022” from CNET and Car and Driver. The company partnered with residential solar provider Sunrun to offer Level 2 EV charging stations. The co-branded EV charger joins Sunrun’s rooftop residential solar and battery energy storage offerings.

The EV charger provider developed the Electric Pan-American Charging Corridor of EV chargers, which enabled actors Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman to ride electric vehicles over 13,000 miles, 16 border crossings and 13 countries, from northern Mexico to the southern tip of Argentina. The journey was documented in an 11-part series called “Long Way Up,” featured on Apple TV+.

Enel also launched Gridspertise last year, a network of digital twins designed to optimize grid and asset operations. Recommendations made by the service have led to 26% savings on trimming for vegetation management, 15% savings for maintenance, and 50% savings for engineering measurement with an overall increase in safety and efficiency of field workers.

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