March 7 (Renewables Now) - Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ:MSFT) will be buying the output of a 74-MW solar park in North Carolina that will be constructed by renewables developer Invenergy.
The parties have signed a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) for the whole electricity that the new plant will generate, Invenergy said on Thursday. The so-called Wilkinson Solar Energy Centre is slated to begin commercial operations this year and bring USD 20 million (EUR 17.7m) to the local economy through tax payments, landowner lease payments, wages and benefits for employees. More than 256,620 photovoltaic (PV) modules will power the facility.
Invenergy expects that the project will open over 500 jobs during the construction phase. Apart from building the plant, the US-based firm will also be its owner and operator, following completion.
The PPA is Microsoft’s fourth off-take deal in the PJM Interconnection area and lifts the volume of its directly purchased renewable energy to about 1.3 GW.
"This investment in North Carolina reflects the increasingly compelling value of solar power for customers to meet their energy needs, while also creating economic development opportunities for local communities," said Jim Shield, Invenergy's executive vice president and chief commercial officer.
(USD 1.0 = EUR 0.884)