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Energy companies, Bank of America expand solar power in state

Staff Report //July 17, 2020//

Energy companies, Bank of America expand solar power in state

Staff Report //July 17, 2020//

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Bank of America plans to help Duke Energy, NativeEnergy and Birdseye Renewable Energy expand their solar energy portfolio in low-to-moderate income communities across the Carolinas and Texas.

“These unique projects and partnerships build on our achievement of carbon neutrality and expand our renewable energy commitment,” Andrew Plepler, global environmental, social and governance head at Bank of America, said in a news release. “By driving more clean energy solutions in our facilities, we are developing a broader sustainable energy ecosystem to help transform our operations and the communities where our employees work and live.”

The thousands of new solar panels are expected to produce 200 megawatts of new solar electricity capacity to supply more than 340,000 megawatt-hours of Green-e certified renewable energy certificates each year – equivalent to the amount of electricity Bank of America uses in the Carolinas and much of Texas each year, according to the release. A number of the projects will also feature pollinator habitats with local vegetation.

“These partnerships bring to the forefront creative thinking and innovative solutions to address a changing climate and clean energy access,” Plepler said.

NativeEnergy and Birdseye Renewable Energy will oversee four solar projects in Yemasse, Denmark, Blackville and Dillon. NativeEnergy’s projects, expected to be completed by the end of 2020, include Yemassee’s 10 megawatt facility with 35,000 solar panels on 126 acres, Denmark’s 6 megawatt facility with 20,000 panels on 45 acres and Blackville’s 7.2 megawatt facility, fueled by more than 25,000 panels on 60 acres.

Birdseye Renewable Energy’s Dillon project features 75 acres of 30,000 solar panels expected to produce 10 megawatts of renewable AC energy by the summer or fall of next year under a 10-year renewable energy certificate agreement.

In North Carolina, Bank of America was the first company and financial institution to sign a 10-year renewable energy certificate agreement through the purchase the output of a 25-megawatt solar project covering 180 acres in the Piedmont region. Additionally, the bank purchased renewable energy certificates via 3Degrees to develop four North Carolina solar projects in Harnett, Columbus, Nash and Johnston, expected to generate 33,000 megawatt hours each year.