Monday, April 18, 2011

Duke Energy Renewables Acquires Solar Farm at N.C. Elementary School

Duke Energy Renewables now owns a 1-megawatt solar farm on the grounds of an elementary school in the southwestern corner of North Carolina.

Approximately 4,400 ground-mounted photovoltaic (PV) solar modules on the property of the Martins Creek Elementary School in Murphy, N.C., will generate an estimated 1.3 million kilowatt-hours of electricity each year – enough to power more than 150 average-sized homes.

Duke Energy Renewables, part of Duke Energy's Commercial Businesses, acquired Martins Creek Solar N.C., LLC, from ESA Renewables, LLC, in March 2011. ESA Renewables designed and built the solar array, and operates it for Duke Energy Renewables. Electricity from the solar farm is sold through Blue Ridge Mountain EMC to the Tennessee Valley Authority, as part of TVA's Generation Partners(SM) program. The site began producing electricity in March.

The PV installation is believed to be the only one of its kind on school property in the state and the third-largest solar farm sited on school property in the U.S. The structure of the 10-year power purchase agreement with TVA through Blue Ridge Mountain EMC enables the elementary school to share in revenue created by electric generation at the site. This revenue roughly equates to the cost of staffing two full-time teachers at the school.

An interactive electronic display allows Martins Creek Elementary School students to track power production at the PV facility, which is located approximately 500 yards from the school.

The Martins Creek Solar Project is Duke Energy Renewables' fourth commercial solar farm in North Carolina and fifth nationwide. Duke Energy Renewables' initiatives are separate from the activities of Duke Energy Carolinas, which is part of Duke Energy's regulated business.

About Duke Energy Renewables
Duke Energy Renewables, part of Duke Energy's Commercial Businesses, is a leader in developing innovative wind and solar energy solutions for customers throughout the United States. The company's growing portfolio of commercial renewable assets includes nine wind farms and four solar farms in operation in five states, totaling approximately 1,000 megawatts in electric-generating capacity.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK.

About ESA Renewables, LLC
Located in Lake Mary, FL, ESA Renewables has positioned itself as a leader in the industry providing turnkey solar PV systems globally. ESA owns and operates a diverse portfolio of over 400 solar PV power generating facilities located in the United States, Puerto Rico, Spain and Italy. ESA’s scope of services includes financing, engineering, construction, testing and operation and maintenance. With headquarters in Castellon Spain, ESA has additional offices in Florida, Puerto Rico, France and Italy. For more information about ESA Renewables, LLC, please visit or call 407-536-5346.


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