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Construction begins on RWE’s Hickory Park project

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Energy Global,

RWE Renewables (RWE)’s Hickory Park Solar project, a 195.5 MW facility coupled with a 40 MW two hour battery storage system, located in Mitchell County, Georgia, US, is under construction.

RWE is the operator and manager of the solar facility, selling the energy and renewable attributes from the facility to Georgia Power through its Renewable Energy Development Initiative programme. The project is expected to be online in late 2021.

The company announced in November 2019 that it entered into a 30-year power purchase agreement with Georgia Power Company, an investor owned public utility that serves more than 2.6 million customers.

When complete, the Hickory Park solar power plant will interconnect more than 650 000 solar panels, which together will cover an area of about 1800 acres. The integration of a state-of-the-art DC-coupled storage system will allow the project’s energy yield to be optimised and increase the predictability of injection of locally produced energy into the Georgia Power grid. This demonstrates how RWE is able to propose storage solutions that fit its customers’ needs to integrate more clean energy into the grid.

RWE aspires to play a major role in energy storage across its target markets, where more than 50% of the total global utility scale storage additions are expected. In the US, the company is developing a number of storage projects either standalone or co-located with its solar projects.

The US accounts for more than one third of the RWE Group’s renewables capacity, playing a key role in the company’s strategy to grow its renewables business and to become carbon neutral by 2040. RWE constructs, owns and operates some of the highest performing wind, solar and energy storage projects in the US.

In addition to Hickory Park, RWE owns and operates West of the Pecos solar project, a 100 MW project located in Reeves County, Texas, US. The company also has experience in the US onshore market, with more than 4.2 GW (RWE’s pro rata share is about 3.6 GW) of onshore wind. In addition, RWE currently has almost 1 GW of onshore wind farms under construction in the US. The projects are located in Texas, Oklahoma, Ohio and New York State.

RWE has recently entered into a joint venture, New England Alpha Ventus, focused on floating offshore wind in the state of Maine, US.

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