State Corporation Commission approves new solar facility in Spotsylvania County

virginia mapThe State Corporation Commission has granted conditional approval to Pleinmont Solar LLC for a 500-megawatt solar generating facility in Spotsylvania County.

Pending local special use permits and state environmental approvals, and bearing the capital costs of network upgrades, the solar facility will be constructed on around 3,500 acres of property in the western part of Spotsylvania County. Pleinmont Solar LLC and its joint applicants will bear the cost of the project, and the electricity generated would be sold on the PJM Interconnection wholesale market.

“We find that the proposed project will likely generate direct and indirect economic benefits to Spotsylvania County and the Commonwealth as a result of employment and spending from construction and operation,” the Commission wrote. The Commission also added that the business risk associated with constructing, owning, and operating the project will not be borne by ratepayers from any incumbent electric utility.

In its final order, the Commission noted the record established environmental concerns that will be mitigated by the applicant compliance with Virginia Department of Environmental Quality recommendations. The Commission also added that, “Spotsylvania County has wide latitude in attaching conditions to the Special Use Permit necessary for the project” for concerns not explicitly addressed by DEQ recommendations or in the county’s permit ordinances.

Pleinmont intends to have the first phase of the project in service by June 30, 2019.

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