Duke Energy’s largest solar plant supplies solar via VPPAs

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions (DESS), a nonregulated commercial brand of Duke Energy, announced that its largest-ever solar power plant, the Texas-based 250-MW Pisgah Ridge, has reached commercial operation.

More than 90% of the solar energy generated by the Pisgah Ridge solar project will be supplied to three companies via virtual power purchase agreements (VPPAs). Charles River Laboratories International Inc signed for 102 MW of the project, the Midwest retailer Meijer signed for 83 MW and one other undisclosed company has a third VPPA. All three VPPAs will last 15 years and settle on an as-generated basis tied to the project’s real-time energy output.

The 250-MW Pisgah Ridge Solar Power Plant by DESS
The 250-MW Pisgah Ridge solar power plant by Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions (DESS)

“Charles River has committed to sourcing 100% of our global electricity needs through renewable sources by 2030,” said Gregg Belardo, Executive Director of EHS & Sustainability at Charles River. “Our VPPA with DESS provides coverage for our North American facilities and moves us significantly closer to that global goal. We are proud to partner with Duke Energy and are excited that Pisgah Ridge is now online.”

“Lessening our impact on the environment through a continued commitment in reducing carbon emissions is an issue that is important to us and our customers,” said Erik Petrovskis, Director of Environmental Compliance and Sustainability at Meijer. “We’ve made significant progress over the years, but this project with Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions puts us on the right path to making an even bigger impact.”

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions currently operates nearly 1,500 MW of wind, 750 MW of solar and a 36-MW battery storage facility in Texas.

“We’re excited to continue to grow our Texas solar portfolio,” said Chris Fallon, President of Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions. “This project demonstrates how we can continue to expand our renewable energy resources while providing unique sustainability solutions for commercial customers.”

The engineering and construction for the project was performed by Moss. Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions will own and operate the project.

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