For the first time in company history, solar energy is part of the energy mix being delivered to Ameren Missouri's 1.2 million electric customers. Following more than a month of successful testing, the O'Fallon Renewable Energy Center, Ameren Missouri's first solar center and the largest investor-owned utility scale solar facility in Missouri, is online.
The center features more than 19,000 solar panels covering more than 19 acres and generates nearly 6 MW of electricity to Ameren Missouri's grid. Groundbreaking on the facility in O'Fallon took place this past April. It created almost 70 construction jobs. The facility is one of Ameren Missouri's investments on behalf of customers for cleaner air and renewable energy.
"This is an exciting milestone for Ameren Missouri," said Michael Moehn, President and CEO of Ameren Missouri. "The solar energy center is a clear example of Ameren Missouri's commitment to power the quality of life for customers with cleaner energy from a diverse mix of sources."
Ameren Missouri plans to significantly expand its renewable energy generation portfolio. The company's Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) calls for construction of a second solar energy center in 2016 that would be the largest in the state of Missouri. Also under the IRP, Ameren Missouri will add renewable generation using wind power, hydroelectric and landfill gas. The IRP was filed earlier this year with the Missouri Public Service Commission.
Ameren Missouri has been providing electric and gas service for more than 100 years, and has a strong history of renewable energy investments that extends back more than a century. The company's first hydroelectric energy center, the Keokuk Energy Center, opened in 1913 and continues to supply customers with renewable energy to this day. In 2012, the company opened the Maryland Heights Renewable Energy Center, one of the largest facilities in the nation turning landfill gas into energy, or "methane to megawatts."