D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments (DESRI) has closed its acquisition of and debt financing for the Arroyo Solar and Storage project.
Arroyo is a 300 MW AC solar and 150 MW AC/600 MWh battery energy storage system facility that is being developed in McKinley County, N.M. The first phase of the project is expected to commence operations in June 2022, with full commercial operation anticipated for fall 2022.
Arroyo is DESRI’s first solar project with co-located battery storage to enter construction and financing. Once operational, it will be one of the largest solar and battery projects in the U.S. DESRI acquired the project from the original developer, Centaurus Renewable Energy.
Arroyo has two offtake contracts with Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) for the solar and storage output respectively. The facility is expected to generate enough clean energy to power approximately 83,500 homes each year, according to metrics provided by the Environmental Protection Agency.
“DESRI is proud to partner with PNM to provide clean energy to their customers,” says David Zwillinger, CEO of DESRI. “Incorporating battery storage in solar projects has the potential to change the landscape of the renewable energy industry going forward, and we’re excited to offer storage capabilities to PNM as part of the Arroyo project.”
“As PNM continues our path to 100 percent carbon-free electricity, we eagerly await the first of the large-scale batteries and associated solar to come on our system,” states Tom Fallgren, vice president of PNM generation. “This project demonstrates New Mexico’s leadership throughout the nation in reducing our carbon footprint.”
Financing for the acquisition and construction of the project was led by Nord/LB and included four additional joint lead arrangers: MUFG Union Bank, N.A.; Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation; National Bank of Canada; and Societe Generale.
Sundt Construction Inc. will construct the solar facility, which will use Nextracker trackers. ECI of Billings, MT is providing the design for the substation and switchyard that will be built by its subsidiary, EPC Services Company. Tesla will supply and commission megapacks for the facility, and Affordable Solar Installation Inc. will construct the battery energy storage system. In addition, SOLV Inc. and Tesla will provide ongoing operations and maintenance services to the facility once operational.