Duke Acquires 16-MW Solar Power Project

Duke Energy is adding solar power to its commercial renewable energy portfolio through the acquisition of a large-scale solar photovoltaic project under development in San Antonio, Texas. Duke Energy Generation Services (DEGS), a Duke Energy Commercial Businesses unit that owns and develops renewable power assets, will purchase the Blue Wing Solar Project from juwi solar Inc.

The 16-megawatt (MW) project will consist of 214,500 ground-mounted First Solar thin film panels. With the acquisition comes a 30-year power purchase agreement to sell all of the output from the solar farm and associated renewable energy credits to CPS Energy, one of the largest municipality-owned utilities in the U.S.

Construction will follow the close of the acquisition, which is expected in the first quarter of 2010. The 139-acre project is expected to be completed and energized by the fourth quarter of 2010. No other terms were disclosed.

Blue Wing will be the first commercial solar power project Duke Energy will own and operate. Duke Energy Carolinas, part of the company’s regulated business, is installing solar panels on select business and residential customers’ rooftops as part of a $50 million program.

“Duke Energy’s acquisition of the Blue Wing Solar Project adds an exciting new dimension to our renewable power business,” said Wouter van Kempen, president of DEGS. “We took our wind energy business from zero megawatts to more than 730 megawatts in under three years, so I’m very confident we can grow our solar power business.”

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