Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signed an agreement with Dominion Energy for new solar and wind projects to power state-owned buildings and facilities. This includes Virginia’s first onshore wind facility, a 75-megawatt project Apex Clean Energy is developing near Roanoke.
The agreement calls for four solar projects that total 345 MW: Belcher Solar in Louisa County with 88 MW, Bedford Solar in the City of Chesapeake with 70 MW, Walnut Solar in King and Queen County with at least 90 MW, and a fourth solar project yet to be named.
Apex Clean Energy is working on the new wind farm, called Rocky Forge Wind, in Botetourt County. The wind facility is expected to generate $20 million to $25 million in total tax revenue for the state and county, according to the utility-scale wind and solar power facilities developer.
All of the projects are just for the Commonwealth of Virginia and won’t affect customer rates, Dominion Energy said.
About a month ago, Dominion Energy acquired two solar projects in Virginia with 95 MW of generating capacity that the energy company says are expected to enter service next year. Those projects plus the four new ones and the onshore wind facility should produce enough power to meet the equivalent of 45% of the state government’s annual energy use, according to Dominion Energy.
“It has been a historic month for renewable energy in the commonwealth — with this landmark contract, we are continuing to lead by example in cutting emissions, investing in clean energy, and ensuring a healthy world for future generations,” Northam said.
Last year Dominion Energy announced plans to add 3 gigawatts of new solar and wind generation to the Virginia grid by 2022. The utility has also targeted a goal of reducing power generating facility carbon emissions 55% from 2005 levels, and reducing gas asset methane emissions 50% from 2010 levels.