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Duke Energy acquires Clearway Energy Group's 100MW Wildflower Solar project


Duke Energy acquires Clearway Energy Group's 100MW Wildflower Solar project
Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions is expanding its solar energy portfolio by acquiring Clearway Energy Group's 100-megawatt (MW) Wildflower Solar project. The solar project will produce enough energy to power about 21,000 homes.

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions* is a Duke Energy non-regulated commercial brand.

The site is in Desoto County, Mississippi, and is expected to begin full construction in late 2022 and be operational in late 2023. It will be Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions' first renewable energy project in Mississippi.

Toyota North America has signed a 15-year virtual power purchase agreement for up to 80 MWs of the project's solar energy. The agreement will be settled financially on an as-generated basis based on the project's real-time energy output.

Wildflower Solar, which is close to Toyota's Mississippi manufacturing facility, will assist the automaker in replacing high-emission electricity used in its operations with zero-emission renewable electricity from the grid. The move is another significant step toward Toyota's goal of becoming carbon neutral in its operations by 2035.

“We’re excited to continue to expand our commercial solar portfolio and enter into the Mississippi market, which will build upon the area’s clean energy resources,” said Chris Fallon, president of Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions.

“Once complete, Wildflower Solar will further diversify Mississippi’s energy infrastructure, while also reducing Toyota’s emissions from its North American operations.”

”Our collective future depends on clean mobility, clean air, clean water and biodiversity,” said Kevin Butt, director of sustainability for Toyota Motor North America.

“Renewable energy sources, like solar, are a key to achieving our goal of carbon neutrality and our purchase from Wildflower alone has the potential to reduce Toyota’s carbon footprint in North America by as much as 8 percent.”

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions will own and operate the project, which will employ 300 people at its peak. Along with the indirect economic benefits associated with solar project development, such as increased local spending in the service and construction industries, the Wildflower Solar facility will have a positive economic impact on the local community by providing significant tax revenues to Mississippi public schools.

Duke Energy has more than 10,500 MW of solar and wind energy, making it one of the nation's leading renewable energy providers.