A $78.5 million solar farm is planned for north Louisiana by a company hoping to bid at some point on a contract to provide power to Entergy Louisiana.
Houston-based EDP Renewables North America, the U.S. subsidiary of Portuguese electric utilities giant Energias de Portugal, is behind the project in Morehouse Parish in Bastrop.
In 2016, EDP Renewables began laying the groundwork for the solar farm and bid to sell power generated there to Entergy Louisiana. This February, Entergy Louisiana won approval from the state to buy solar power instead from a new 50-megawatt plant in West Baton Rough Parish for 20 years, built and run by a company out of Arizona.
Entergy Louisiana has won approval to buy solar power from a 50-megawatt power plant slated for West Baton Rouge Parish, a previously-announce…
EDP Renewables plans to bid again when Entergy Louisiana opens a new round of requests for proposals.
“While we anticipate additional RFPs for renewable resources in the future, there are none currently active,” said Lee Sabatini, spokesperson for Entergy.
"EDP Renewables is continuing to develop the project and is pursuing commercial opportunities to sell the energy from the project," said Blair Matocha, a spokesperson for the company.
Plans include 200,000 solar panels slated to generate 50 megawatts of electricity. Construction is expected to begin in October 2020 and wrap up by September 2022, state records show. It would create two local jobs, supporting about 50 construction workers during development of the project.
In 2018, the national average for the number of homes powered by one megawatt of solar power is 190, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. That means a 50-megawatt solar farm may provide power for 9,500 homes.
Entergy already has about 180 megawatts of renewable energy stemming from various forms in its portfolio, according to its website. Entergy is under pressure by the city of New Orleans to increase its renewable energy sources.