Arkansas Public Service Commission approves Entergy’s solar project

29 April 2020 (Last Updated April 29th, 2020 12:36)

The Arkansas Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved Entergy’s 100MW solar project with a 10MW battery storage facility.

Arkansas Public Service Commission approves Entergy’s solar project
Searcy Solar facility will be built in an area of approximately 800 acres. Credit: Markus Spiske.

The Arkansas Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved Entergy’s 100MW solar project with a 10MW battery storage facility.

Renamed the Searcy Solar project, it will be built in White County and the first project with battery storage. It is also said to be the largest utility-owned facility in Arkansas, US.

The solar facility will be built in an area of approximately 800 acres and the 10MW array of lithium-ion batteries will have the capacity to store up to 30MWh of electricity.

Entergy Arkansas president and CEO Laura Landreaux said: “Entergy Arkansas is proud to be leading the charge in expanding solar power in our state, and we are committed to meeting our customers’ energy needs reliably, affordably and safely as we have done for over 100 years.

“Large-scale solar facilities provide the most cost-effective solar power for all customers, keeping rates low while delivering the best value for renewables in Arkansas.”

Once completed in 2021, the Searcy Solar project will become the third solar facility that will serve Entergy Arkansas customers.

It will increase the total solar energy to 281MW, which will be sufficient to meet the power needs of nearly 45,000 homes.

During the construction phase, the Searcy Solar facility is expected to create 200 temporary construction employment opportunities with two or three permanent jobs and periodic maintenance workers.

The project will generate revenue of nearly $700,000 and emissions-free energy.

Arkansas Secretary of Commerce Mike Preston said: “This large solar facility will be a very effective economic development tool as we work to attract new employers and retain our existing businesses. Many corporations have renewable energy and sustainability objectives.

“This facility, combined with Entergy’s other large solar facilities in Arkansas, will help us strengthen and grow the state’s economy.”