Consumers Energy, Pine Gate Renewables and Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors L.P. say five new solar energy projects in Genesee County, Mich., and three in Saginaw County, Mich., are now online and providing renewable electricity to Consumers Energy customers.
“These solar plants coming online are a testament to our commitment to solar energy in Michigan as a major component of the Clean Energy Plan, our blueprint for a coal-free and carbon-neutral future,” says Tim Sparks, vice president of electric grid integration at Consumers Energy. “We thank Pine Gate Renewables for shared beliefs in protecting our planet and for their expertise building the vital clean energy infrastructure.”
The eight sites were built and are operated by Pine Gate Renewables and are owned by Kayne Anderson. Consumers Energy has 20-year agreements to purchase the energy from the projects. Each solar farm has a 2 MW capacity. Combined, the solar farms produce up to 16 MW, adding to Consumers Energy’s 10 MW of solar energy capacity previously available to serve its customers.
The names of the local solar projects that began operations in the last five weeks are Captain Solar, Interchange Solar, Jack Francis Solar, May Shannon Solar and Coldwater Solar in Genesee County, and Geddes 1 Solar, Geddes 2 Solar and Stoneheart Solar in Saginaw County. These initial eight projects include 56,313 solar panels and have employed approximately 240 local workers through construction.
Consumers Energy’s Clean Energy Plan calls for eliminating coal as an energy source, achieving net-zero carbon emissions and meeting 90% of customers’ energy needs through clean sources like renewable energy, energy waste reduction and energy storage.
Consumers Energy has agreements to purchase energy from six additional Kayne Anderson solar projects elsewhere in Michigan which are scheduled to begin operating this month.
Photo: Consumer’s Energy Clean Energy Plan