100 MW Sunflower Solar Project construction begins, Mississippi
Construction on the 100 MW Sunflower Solar project has officially broken ground in Sunflower County, Mississippi. Canadian Solar Inc announced that its subsidiary, Recurrent Energy recently closed debt financing totaling over US$146 million, inclusive of construction loan and letter of credit commitments. The debt financing was provided by Norddeutsche Landesbank and Rabobank. Sunflower is one of the first utility-scale solar projects to be constructed under a Build Transfer Agreement (“BTA”) in the United States. Recurrent Energy signed a BTA with Entergy Mississippi in 2018 designating the regulated utility to own the Sunflower solar project when it reaches commercial operation in early 2022. The BTA was approved via unanimous vote by the Mississippi Public Service Commission in April 2020.
The Sunflower solar project is expected to employ approximately 400 workers at peak construction, with 75% of those construction jobs expected to be filled by local skilled tradespeople from the area. The Sunflower solar project will create further economic benefits to the local community by providing local sales and property tax revenues to Sunflower County, as well as indirect benefits such as increased local spending on the service and construction industries. The project will use Canadian Solar’s high-efficiency modules. Once operational, the project will power more than 16,000 homes with low-cost, clean electricity.
“With the ongoing financing and construction challenges due to the pandemic, I am particularly proud that our team secured the necessary financing for construction and has executed on the ground to begin building what is expected to be the largest solar project in the Magnolia State. This demonstrates both the dedication and capabilities of our Recurrent Energy team and the strength of our trusted financing partners, Nord/LB and Rabobank. We are very pleased to be charging ahead on the Sunflower solar project and look forward to successfully developing and constructing the project, creating a seamless transition of ownership to our valued customer, Entergy Mississippi” said Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Solar.
Source: Construction Review Online