BP has signed an agreement to acquire solar development projects in the US with 9GW capacity from 7X Energy to boost its renewables business in the country.

BP has agreed to pay $220m to 7X Energy for the projects and 1GW of ‘safe harbour’ equipment.

The projects are spread across 12 US states, with the largest portfolios in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) and the Midwest Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland (PJM) region.

BP said that assets with a combined 2.2GW generating capacity are expected to reach a final investment decision by 2025, with the remaining expected by 2030.

Once online, these projects will have the capacity to power around 1.7 million homes in the country.

They will be developed through the company’s 50-50 joint venture, Lightsource BP, and are expected to meet BP’s low carbon investment criteria, generating returns of 8%-10%.

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The deal will fast track BP’s progress towards target of developing 20GW of low carbon energy by 2025 and support its ambition to increase this target to 50GW by the end of this decade.

It will also increase BP’s renewables pipeline from 14GW to 23GW.

BP gas and low carbon energy executive vice-president Dev Sanyal said: “With this purchase, we are continuing to put our strategy in action as we grow our renewables business in a deliberate and disciplined way.

“We will bring the industry-leading expertise of Lightsource BP together with the breadth of BP’s integration capabilities in the US to develop this portfolio of projects. This is a significant step as we continue to deliver on our net zero ambition.”

BP anticipates that the transaction will conclude in 30 days.

BP America chairman and president Dave Lawler said: “In line with our strategy, we’ll aim to integrate these projects with our existing onshore and offshore wind, natural gas, and trading and shipping businesses to give customers what they want, reliable, affordable and clean energy.”