South Mississippi Electric (SME) says it plans to grow its renewable energy portfolio through a 52 MW solar facility to be located in Lamar County, Miss.
The nonprofit cooperative has signed a letter of intent with Origis Energy USA to proceed with further negotiations toward a final agreement, whereby Origis will design, develop, install and operate the solar project. SME would purchase all of the electricity produced by the facility.
The project is expected to be operational by December 2016.
The agreement comes on the heels of SME's announcement in May that it would build five smaller solar installations – 100 kW or less – at five Electric Power Association member locations: Coahoma, Coast, Delta, Southern Pine and Singing River. Those solar generation sites are expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2016.
"For many years, our goal for generation facilities has been fuel diversity,’ says Jim Compton, SME's CEO and general manager. ‘Our members overwhelmingly want us to diversify our energy to include renewables, and we are responding.’