Silicon Ranch plans 252 MW solar portfolio for Georgia co-ops

Green Power EMC, the renewable energy supplier for more than three dozen Georgia Electric Membership Corporations, and Silicon Ranch plan to develop 252 MWAC of solar energy capacity to serve 16 subscribing cooperatives across Georgia.

The total capacity will be generated from three locations in southern Georgia.

Silicon Ranch is funding the three utility-scale solar facilities and plans to build them in stages over the next three years. The company will also own, operate, and maintain the arrays for the long-term. Green Power EMC will buy all the energy and environmental attributes generated by the facilities on behalf of its member cooperatives.

The first site, Snipesville III, will be a 107 MWAC solar facility located in Jeff Davis County in the southeastern part of the state. Construction is expected to start later this year, and the facility is scheduled to be operational by mid-2023.

The site is close to two other cooperative solar projects. Nearby, Silicon Ranch and Green Power EMC commissioned Snipesville I (86 MWAC) in December 2020. And Silicon Ranch completed construction of Snipesville II (107 MWAC) in December 2021 to provide power to one of Green Power EMC’s member cooperatives, Walton EMC, as part of the utility’s agreement to supply renewable energy to Meta’s data center in Newton County.

The second site in the portfolio, DeSoto II, will be a 65 MWAC solar facility located in Lee County, near Albany. Silicon Ranch expects to begin construction in late 2022 and plans to bring the facility online by late 2023. The facility will be built next to DeSoto I, where construction is already underway. Like Snipesville II, the DeSoto I facility will serve Walton EMC to support Meta’s Georgia operations. 

The third site, Ailey, will be an 80 MWAC solar facility located in Montgomery County near Vidalia. Silicon Ranch plans to build the project in 2024 and expects the facility to be online later that year.

In early January, Silicon Ranch said that it raised $775 million in new equity capital. Manulife Investment Management, on behalf of Manulife Infrastructure Fund II and John Hancock, led the round with a roughly $400 million commitment, its first investment in the company. Existing Silicon Ranch shareholders also invested, including Shell, TD Greystone Infrastructure Fund (Global Master) L.P., and Mountain Group Partners.

The equity raise capped a record year for Nashville-based Silicon Ranch. Since closing a $225 million raise in December 2020, the company said it had more than doubled its operating capacity and grown its total contracted portfolio by more than 80%. In September 2021, the company acquired clean tech pioneer Clearloop to expand Silicon Ranch’s offering to corporate buyers who are seeking to meet renewable energy targets and broader ESG goals.

Silicon Ranch was founded in 2011 and owns, operates, and maintains more than 150 solar generating facilities in 15 states from New York to California. 

Source: Renewable Energy