On Monday, The Charlotte City Council voted to participate in the Duke Energy Green Source Advantage (GSA) Program, which means that the North Carolina city will move forward with a 35-MW, utility-scale solar energy project.
GSA is an electric power holding company in the U.S. that provides electricity to millions of customers across six states. The business owns and operates diverse power generation assets, with a focus on renewable energy.
Solar energy developers Carolina Solar Energy and Ecoplexus will build the solar farm, which is expected to be fully operational by 2022. The project is expected to save the city nearly $2 million in energy expenses over 20 years and will improve air quality in the region by reducing harmful pollution, said the city of Charlotte in a press release.
This project is also expected to create 428 jobs in the region.
Charlotte claims to be the nation’s most populous city to acquire new renewable energy through a utility green tariff and it aims to achieve 100% zero carbon municipal buildings by 2030.
Charlotte is also one of 25 cities selected to participate in the American Cities Climate Challenge. These cities aim to reduce pollution that contributes to climate change and impacts public health.
“Not only does this 35-megawatt solar energy project get us 25% of the way towards our goal in a very short time, but it contributes to building the green economy and improves our citizens’ quality of life,” said Heather Bolick, Energy & Sustainability Coordinator for the city of Charlotte.