NuQuest Energy LLC, a recently established US solar developer, has progressed its first portfolio, consisting of six utility-scale solar projects totalling 1 GW, to the MISO (Midcontinent Independent System Operator) queue for evaluation, the company said on Tuesday.
The Louisiana-based developer has assembled the 1-GW portfolio in 15 months, faster than its target of doing this in three years. Alex Guitart, one of the company’s four co-founders, said it is on track for originating the next gigawatt of sites. The business is currently focused on Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas and Mississippi.
“We’ve rapidly scaled a high-quality portfolio of projects utilising our technologically-driven approach with our proprietary system called TerraVolt,” said Kirk Barrell, another co-founder, who is also the founder of Amelia Resources LLC and Barrell Energy Inc.
MISO manages the transmission system across 15 US states and the Canadian province of Manitoba. At the end of September, it said it is seeing exponential growth in the queue.
The system operator said it received 956 interconnection requests representing 171 GW of new generation, mainly renewable or storage resources, during the 2022 generator interconnection queue (GIQ) application period. This is another record and well above last year’s applications, which were 487 for 77 GW of capacity.
This year’s application window saw requests for 84 GW of solar, 34 GW of hybrid projects, 32 GW of storage projects and 14 GW of wind projects.
In July, MISO’s board approved USD 10.3 billion of transmission projects, or tranche 1 of its Long Range Transmission Planning (LRTP) effort. It now said the 2022 GIQ studies will take into account these projects that will increase grid capacity.
“It seems the LRTP Tranche 1 approval and Inflation Reduction Act have spurred additional interest this year by enabling and incentivising new resources to come online. We are working with our stakeholders on the additional regional transmission needed to accommodate this resource shift,” said Andy Witmeier, director – resource utilisation at MISO.
If the 2022 project submissions are all accepted as valid applications, the MISO queue would expand to 289 GW from 118 GW now.
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