Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, Inc. (Tri-State), a wholesale power supplier owned by 44 member electric cooperatives and public power districts, and D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments, L.L.C. (DESRI), signed a 25-year contract to purchase renewable energy generated by the planned 25MW Alta Luna Solar Project. This marks the third solar power purchase agreement inked by Tri-State.
to supply the utility with renewable energy from the planned Alta Luna Solar Project to be constructed in Luna County in southwest New Mexico.
The Alta Luna Solar Project is planned to be constructed in Luna County in southwest New Mexico. By consisting of single-axis tracking arrays for over 108,000 solar PV panels, the facility is expected to come online in December 2016 and will receive electric service from Columbus Electric, a Tri-State member system serving approximately 3,000 members and over 6,800 meters from its headquarters in Deming, N.M. The project was developed by TurningPoint Energy, a Denver-based energy developer, and subsequently sold to an affiliate of DESRI in partnership with Bright Plain Renewable Energy, LLC, a San Francisco based solar project developer, investor and operator.
"Alta Luna Solar is the third utility-scale renewable energy project we've announced this year and further demonstrates how Tri-State and its members are committed to a diverse yet cost-effective generation fleet," said Brad Nebergall, Tri-State's senior vice president of energy management. "We are very thankful to our partners for their cooperation and shared vision in this effort."
The Alta Luna Solar Project is Tri-State's second utility-scale solar PV power purchase agreement in New Mexico and the third in its system overall; in 2010 the utility began receiving power from the 30MW Cimarron Solar facility located in Colfax County, N.M., and last month Tri-State announced an agreement to purchase power from the 30MW San Isabel Solar Project to be constructed in southern Colorado. In 2014, 24% of the energy Tri-State and its member systems delivered to cooperative members was generated from renewable resources.