Earlier this month, council leaders of the Gila River Indian Community, led by Arizona Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis, signed an agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to begin work on a solar-over-canal pilot project.
By constructing panels over a portion of the community’s Level Top Canal, the project aims to conserve water and generate energy for tribal irrigation facilities. Phase I project costs are estimated to be $6.74 million and it is expected to produce approximately 1 MW of renewable energy.
With the execution of this agreement, the Army Corps will now begin the project’s construction phase, with completion expected in 2025.
“I want to personally thank Assistant Secretary Connor for his vision and steadfast support for this innovative project. Our work with the assistant secretary dates back decades, and the community deeply appreciates him and his support,” says Lewis.
The PPA describes the project and the responsibilities of the federal government and the non-federal sponsor in the cost-sharing and execution of work.