The 1-MW Georgia solar array developed by solar design and construction leader SolAmerica Energy and national solar company OCI Solar Power is fully operational in Lavonia, Ga. Energy produced will be sold to Georgia Power, pursuant to its Advanced Solar Initiative.
“OCI Solar’s national footprint plus years of commercial solar experience, combined with SOLAMERICA’s local expertise, create an ideal partnership to develop this system,” said R. Stanley Allen, president of SOLAMERICA. The solar project is located on eleven acres on State Route 59 outside of Lavonia, Georgia in Franklin County.
SOLAMERICA served as developer and Engineering, Procurement & Construction contractor for OCISP which will own and operate the project under a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement with Georgia Power. SOLAMERICA will also provide operations & maintenance services to OCISP for the project.
“We are proud to complete our first project in Georgia alongside SOLAMERICA and to revisit our Atlanta roots,” said OCI Solar Power President and CEO Tony Dorazio. OCI Solar Power is a subsidiary of Atlanta-based OCI Enterprises, whose chemical operation is one of the world’s largest producers of natural soda ash, sodium percarbonate and hydrogen peroxide. OCI Solar Power relocated to San Antonio in 2012 after partnering with the city’s municipal utility to bring 400 megawatts of solar power to Texas.
The Lavonia project is interconnected with Georgia Power’s distribution network and is part of the company’s effort to add renewable sources of energy into its resource mix. “We are pleased to see these solar facilities coming online as part of our ASI program,” said Ervan Hancock, renewable implementation manager for Georgia Power. “Through agreements with developers like SOLAMERICA, which allow us to cultivate cost-effective solar energy for our customers, we anticipate more than 500 new solar projects across the state will be coming online in the coming years.”
In the fall of 2012, Georgia Power proposed, and the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) approved, the company’s Advanced Solar Initiative (GPASI). The GPASI was launched with no regulatory requirement and with a market-based design that does not put upward pressure on customer rates. In 2013, as part of the company’s IRP, the PSC approved an additional 525 MW of solar energy to be procured with similar requirements. Georgia Power’s cumulative programs are expected to result in nearly 800 MW of solar capacity when fully implemented, giving it the largest voluntary solar portfolio and one of the largest in the nation.
— Solar Builder magazine