EDF EN Canada - an EDF Energies Nouvelles Company confirmed that it has reached commercial operation and closed financing on the first 12 MWp installation of the St Isidore Solar Project.
The St. Isidore Solar Project consists of two 12 MWp solar PV installations located six kilometers apart, near the town of St. Isidore in the Municipality of the Nation, Ontario. The first site - St Isidore A, began delivering clean electricity to the Hydro One distribution grid in late December. The site consists of 153,000 panels, which will generate solar energy to meet the peak demands of about 3,500 Ontario homes. enXco Service Canada Corporation will provide operations and maintenance services.
The second installation - St Isidore B, is under development and will be completed in 2011. These two installations combined will deliver 24 MWp under the Government of Ontario's Renewable Energy Standard Offer Program (RESOP). The St. Isidore project is the first utility-scale solar PV project developed and constructed in a French-speaking municipality in North America. More than 200 workers were employed locally since design, engineering and construction activities commenced in early 2010.
EDF EN Canada has also executed term financing agreements for St Isidore A with Dexia and Union Bank, N.A.
Tristan Grimbert, President and CEO of EDF EN Canada and all EDF EN affiliates in North America said, "Today marks another notable achievement for EDF EN Canada -- we are proud to extend the economic and environmental benefits of solar energy to the St Isidore community and fulfil our ambition to build high-quality solar projects in Canada. This project demonstrates our commitment to grow our installed base of operating solar capacity in Ontario. EDF EN Canada is harnessing 60 MWp of solar energy and feeding it to the distribution grid. Our lenders have once again demonstrated their support of our efforts. We look forward to applying our resources, experience and partnership capabilities to future FIT ground mount and rooftop projects."
St. Isidore A joins the Elmsley Solar Project, located near Lombardy in the Township of Rideau Lakes, as part of EDF EN Canada's 2010 solar achievements. In 2009, EDF EN Canada placed the Arnprior Solar Project in service, which added almost 24 MWp to Ontario's power system. All sites have been developed under the Government of Ontario's Renewable Energy Standard Offer Program (RESOP).
"We are very pleased to continue with our support of EDF EN as it extends its leadership in the Canadian solar market," said Lance Markowitz, Senior Vice President at Union Bank and Manager of Leasing and Asset Finance. "St. Isidore A is a high quality project serving the needs of the Ontario market and Union Bank is once again pleased to play a key role in the financing."
"Following the successful delivery of the Arnprior project, Dexia is pleased to strengthen its support to EDF EN's development plans in Canada and further demonstrate the bank's commitment to the growing solar sector in Canada," commentedStéphane Carrière, Managing Director for Dexia Crédit Local S.A., Canada Branch. "This industry has now shown it can successfully bring projects to completion locally, which bodes well for the future of the FIT program in Ontario and hopefully for other Canadian provinces."