Engie North America has broken ground on its 225MW Long Draw Solar Project in the US state of Texas.

Located in Borden County, the solar project will feature more than 800,000 solar panels and is the largest solar project in Engie’s solar portfolio. It is scheduled to commence operations in summer of 2020.

Engie North America solar development head Luis Felipe Birolini said: “We’re so glad to join with leaders here in Borden County and with our customers to support them in creating new opportunities to diversify their renewable energy sources on a meaningful scale.

“We look forward to completing the project in the summer of 2020, and to providing zero-carbon, affordable energy for years to come.”

During the peak construction phase, the project is expected to employ around 150 people and is expected to generate $10m in tax payments to Borden County and the Borden County Independent School District.

Once completed, the solar project will supply renewable energy to four Texas municipalities and electric utilities under a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA).

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By GlobalData

The four utilities which will receive solar energy from Engie and Long Draw will be New Braunfels Utilities (NBU), who raised the original request for the solar energy proposal, along with Denton Municipal Electric (DME), Garland Power & Light (GP&L) and Kerrville Public Utility Board (KPUB).

Under the PPA, NBU will receive 100MW of the solar energy from the project, Denton 75MW and Garland and Kerville will purchase 25MW each.

NBU CEO Ian Taylor said: “New Braunfels Utilities is pleased to be a part of ENGIE’s Long Draw Solar Project, and today’s groundbreaking ceremony.

“Today culminates many months of hard work and dedication to further enable NBU to be good stewards of our environment, and to deliver affordable and reliable energy to our customers.

“This project is a great example of municipal entities working together for the best of their customers and embodies NBU’s mission in action, to provide innovative, essential services. We look forward to this project coming online in 2020.”