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Roadrunner is a 497MW solar farm being developed in Upton County, Texas, US. It will be the largest solar plant in Texas upon completion.
Owned and operated by Enel Green Power North America, a subsidiary of Enel Group, the phased construction of the project started in February 2019.
The first 252MW phase of the project became operational in December 2019. The second 245MW phase is expected to be completed by the end of 2020. The plant will generate 1.2TWh of power annually, which will offset over 800,000t of CO₂ a year.
The project employed approximately 500 people at the peak of the construction. It will generate approximately $60m for the local community in the new tax revenue.
Roadrunner solar project location
Spanning across a 2,770-acre area, the solar plant lies approximately five miles north-east to the McCamey city in west Texas.
Roadrunner solar project details
Roadrunner solar project will use more than 1.2 million bifacial solar modules based on solar photovoltaic technology. The bifacial solar modules can capture reflection from the ground to produce solar energy, which doubles the production. An existing building in downtown McCamey is being renovated for the local operations of the project.
The company implements its sustainable construction site model for project development. Approximately 275t of pallet wood was reused as mulch and more than 8t of construction waste was recycled for the project development.
WTEC Energy is responsible for supplying solar steel and medium voltage cables for the Roadrunner solar farm.
Power purchase agreements
Enel Green Power signed a 12-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Mondelez International for 65MW energy in October 2019. The power generated by the plant will be transmitted to the electricity grid. The agreement was in line with Mondelez’s new 2025 Impact Goals and will reduce up to 5% of the company’s manufacturing emissions worldwide.
In November 2019, The Clorox Company signed a 12-year 70MW virtual PPA to purchase energy from the project, beginning from 2021. The total purchased electricity will comprise 50% of the company’s renewable energy goal required for operating in the US and Canada. Schneider Electric Energy & Sustainability Services was the advisor on the PPA for the company.
Enel Green Power’s renewable energy projects in the US and Canada
Enel Green Power plays an important role in increasing the renewable energy capacity of the US. Apart from the first phase of the Roadrunner solar project, the company operates 66MW Whitney Hill wand and 185MW Hilltopper wind farms located in Logan County, Illinois, and 450MW High Lonesome wind farm in Texas.
The company has four new projects under construction in the US, including the Roadrunner solar project’s second phase. The projects are 236.5MW White Cloud wind project in Missouri, 299MW Aurora wind project in North Dakota and 50MW expansion of the High Lonesome wind project in Texas. All projects are expected to be operational in 2020.
The company is also constructing the 105MW Riverview and 29.4MW Castle Rock Ridge II wind projects in Alberta, Canada. All the projects under construction in the US and Canada will add a total renewable energy capacity up to 1GW. The company is active across 24 US states and two Canadian provinces, producing more than 5GW of renewable energy a year.
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