Duke Energy switching on large solar farms in NC, Arizona
By Christina Williams
Sustainable Business Oregon editor
CEO Kenny Habul says his SunEnergy1 finished Duke Energy Renewables' 12.5-megawatt solar project on time and on budget.
Duke Energy Renewables has completed its 12.5-megawatt solar project in eastern North Carolina's Beaufort County and its 10-megawatt project near Kingman, Ariz.
The Beaufort project was built by SunEnergy1 of Mooresville. The company is one of the state’s premier solar developers and is engaged in engineering, procurement and construction work as well.
The farm, called the White Post Solar Project, sits on 85 acres near the town of Bath. It has 53,300 photo-voltaic panels. The power produced will be sold to the N.C. Eastern Municipal Power Agency under a 15-year power-purchase contract.
The project more than doubles the 11 megawatts of solar capacity operated by the unregulated subsidiary of Charlotte’s Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK). It is also the largest solar project Duke Renewables has in the eastern United States, says Duke Renewables President Greg Wolf.
Duke Renewables does not disclose the construction costs for its projects. But the Solar Energy Industries Association reports that in the third quarter, the national average price for solar-project construction was $2 million to $3.5 million per megawatt for utility-scale projects.
Based on those figures, the Beaufort project likely cost between $25 million and $40 million to build. And according to price trends in North Carolina, the costs are likely to have been on the lower side of the range.
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