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Parowan — Scatec Solar has received final approvals necessary to proceed with the building of an 80 megawatt photovoltaic solar plant in Iron County. The Utah Red Hills Renewable Energy Park, set to be built on a site with excellent solar irradiation, is planned to generate around 210 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity per year, which will be fed into the grid under a twenty-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with PacifiCorp. Construction is estimated to start in the third quarter of 2014 and when complete, is expected to be Utah's largest solar energy generation facility.
"We are very proud to move into the next stage of development for the Utah Red Hills Renewable Energy Park," said Raymond Carlsen, CEO of Scatec Solar. "With our experience gained from photovoltaic projects around the world, our team is well prepared to take on the challenges associated with realizing this large-scale solar power plant."
The Utah Public Service Commission and Iron County Community Development and Renewal Agency granted Scatec Solar the final approvals, making the project fully permitted and entitled ahead of construction start.
Scatec Solar entered into the twenty-year PPA with PacifiCorp for the purchase of all of the project's energy output and capacity in December 2013. PacifiCorp delivers electricity to customers in Utah, Wyoming and Idaho through Rocky Mountain Power.
The plant is expected to generate approximately 210 million kWh in its first full year of operation—power equivalent to the annual consumption of approximately 18,500 homes. Based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates, it will produce enough renewable power to prevent nearly 150 thousand tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually—the equivalent to removing nearly 28,000 cars from Utah's roads each year of the 20-year agreement.
The ground-mounted photovoltaic solar facility is being developed on approximately 650 acres of privately-owned land in Parowan, it will deploy approximately 325,000 photovoltaic modules on a single-axis tracking system, and will interconnect to an existing PacifiCorp line in the adjacent Parowan Valley Substation.