The 104 MWdc / 80 MWac Graphite Solar delivers benefits for community, powers Meta with clean energy
New York, NY, July 28, 2022 — Greenbacker Renewable Energy Company LLC (“GREC” or “Greenbacker”), a leading green energy investment company and independent power producer, announced that its Graphite Solar project in Carbon County, Utah has entered commercial operation. With a power capacity of 104 MWdc / 80 MWac, Graphite is now the largest operational asset in Greenbacker’s clean energy fleet.
Greenbacker joined project partners and local officials at a July 12 commissioning ceremony hosted by developer rPlus Energies (“rPlus”) to celebrate the project’s completion and the benefits it provides for the area. Graphite supports local green jobs and generates increased tax revenue for the community, while expanding the region’s contributions to America’s energy landscape.
“It’s very special that Graphite Solar can play a role in helping Carbon County diversify its contributions to the local energy infrastructure,” said Charles Wheeler, CEO of GREC. “A place with a long history of power production is now home to Greenbacker’s largest operating clean energy project.” (Previously, the company’s 61 MWdc Turquoise Solar in Nevada held that title.)
The project has begun delivering solar energy to the Meta (formerly Facebook) data center in nearby Eagle Mountain, UT, helping the company power its operations exclusively with renewable energy.
“Bringing new renewable energy and investment to communities where we operate is a priority for Meta,” said Urvi Parekh, Director, Renewable Energy at Meta. “We appreciate the partnership with rPlus and Greenbacker that is delivering this new solar energy to the Utah grid in support of our local operations.”
Greenbacker’s largest operating renewables project to date
Graphite has a long-term power purchase agreement with PacifiCorp on behalf of Meta. The contract was developed under Rocky Mountain Power’s Schedule 34 green energy tariff, which helps sizable energy consumers source renewables to meet their clean energy targets.
“Rocky Mountain Power is committed to helping our customers, and the communities we serve, meet their renewable energy goals,” said Merlin Rushton, regional business manager in Price, Utah. “Projects like this are a demonstration of our company’s commitment to expand energy choices for our customers and manage the transition to a 21st Century electricity network.”
Greenbacker, rPlus, and Sundt Renewables (the project’s engineering, procurement, and construction contractor) have also invested in the community and its workforce with a scholarship program. The Local First Scholarship – Graphite Solar program provides $75,000 to students who reside in Carbon County and who plan to pursue their career goals locally after completing their certificate or degree.
“A lot of work, dedication, and collaboration has been made to get to this point,” said Luigi Resta, rPlus Energies President & CEO. “We are immensely proud that we can contribute to the continuation of the energy legacy that is Carbon County.”
Greenbacker acquired Graphite Solar from rPlus in December 2020, contracting with the developer to manage the project through construction. Construction involved installing 1.5 miles of transmission lines and 257,700 solar modules and supported 273,800 hours of construction labor.
Greenbacker’s fleet of clean energy projects comprises over 2.6 GW of generating capacity (including Graphite and assets that are to be constructed). Since 2016, Greenbacker’s real assets have produced nearly 4.3 million megawatt-hours1 of clean energy, abating more than 3.0 million metric tons of carbon.2 Today these projects support over 4,700 green jobs.3
At the July 12 commissioning ceremony for Graphite Solar
1 Data is as of March 31, 2022.