Luminant Going Solar with a Little Help from SunEdison

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SunEdison and Energy Future Holdings Corporation subsidiary Luminant have entered into a power purchase agreement (PPA). Under the agreement, SunEdison will sell to Luminant 116 MW of solar generated at its Upton County, TX plant. 

This PPA is the largest of its kind in the country. It is also Luminant’s first foray into solar energy. The agreement goes into effect late next year, once SunEdison’s Castle Gap facility comes on-line. The electricity will then be sold to the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) competitive market.

This council manages the flow of electricity for 90 percent of the state’s electric load. As the independent system operator for the region, ERCOT schedules power on the statewide electric grid.

Luminant Chief Executive Officer Mac McFarland said, “We have a long history of operational excellence and innovation in providing safe, affordable electricity for the benefit of Texans, and we are proud to continue that tradition with this solar project.”

“As we evaluate our future generation needs, we focus on projects that are profitable and able to compete in the wholesale market,” McFarland added.

Solar in Texas has had a good year. In March, SunEdison contracted for 150 MW solar facility for the city of Georgetown. This summer, Austin Energy saw solar prices drop to a new low – then drop again, to under 4 cents per kWh. What will Texas do next?