Scenic Hill Solar and Central Arkansas Water (CAW) are pushing ahead with a new 4.8 megawatt DC solar project after receiving regulatory approval.
The Arkansas Public Service Commission has signed off on the project, which will be located near the Main Street exit off of Highway 67/167 in Cabot. This single-axis solar tracking system will be ground-mounted and feature more than 12,300 solar modules.
Under the terms of this solar project, Scenic Hill Solar will handle the construction and operation for the solar plant, which will be located on land owned by Central Arkansas Water. CAW is leasing the land to Scenic Hill Solar.
As part of a 20-year agreement, Scenic Hill Solar will sell electricity from the solar plant to CAW at a rate of 5.1 cents per kilowatt-hour. CAW will have two five-year options to extend the purchasing agreement after the initial 20-year contract.
According to a company news release, CAW expects to save more than $7 million over the course of 30 years through the solar power agreement.
“We are excited about this partnership with Scenic Hill Solar to utilize renewable energy to power CAW operations,” Central Arkansas Water CEO Tad Bohannon said in a statement. “This solar facility is one part of CAW’s ongoing efforts to remain environmentally and economically sustainable for the benefit of customers we serve today and those we will serve in the future.”
Scenic Hill Solar projects that the solar plant will produce more than 8,240,000kilowatt-hours of electricity in its first year and will generate 228,720,000kilo-watt hours over the course of 30 years.
“Central Arkansas Water provides a vital resource to almost 500,000 Arkansans and we are proud to provide solar electricity that reduces costs to Arkansans and improves the environment of the Natural State,” Scenic Hill Solar CEO Bill Halter said. “Scenic Hill Solar will invest more than $7 million into the Central Arkansas economy through this project. We are proud that this project is the first of what we hope will be many to be approved under Act 464. The Arkansas Public Service Commission ruled in our favor and overruled Entergy Arkansas objections on multiple questions. This ruling confirms that remote site Net Metering Facilities are allowed under Arkansas law, that Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) are the property of the customer to do with as they wish, and that 20 years of grandfathering of rates will apply to the Central Arkansas Water Project. These are hard fought victories for Central Arkansas Water and all Arkansas ratepayers.”