Canadian Solar’s 195MW Sicily project finds new majority owner

PV Tech | July 19, 2019

Canadian Solar has brought a new majority shareholder on board to support a large-scale solar PV scheme on Sicily. Milan-headquartered Falck Renewables has agreed to acquire a 70% stake in Big Fish SPV S.r.l., the vehicle holding the rights of a 195MW project on the Mediterranean island. The deal, set to complete by the end of this month, will see the Italian group pay Canadian Solar €60,000 (around US$67,500), an amount only covering the vehicle’s corporate capital share. Project capacity increases could result in the price jumping up to a maximum of €145,000 (around US$163,100), Falck explained in a statement on Thursday. Approached by PV Tech today, the Italian firm had not specified the project’s exact planned location nor its financing arrangements by the time this article went live. According to its statement, the 195MW venture has already procured a connection point and “preliminary” land rights, with plans to follow with applications for building permits in Q4 2019. The promoters of Big Fish SPV S.r.l will finance the project on a pro-rata basis. Falck will have the option to buy the remaining 30% share once the construction all-clear is secured. If finally completed with a size of 195MW.

Spotlight

Duke Energy linemen and trainers recently taught first responders in St. Petersburg, Fla., and the Franklin, N.C., area about power line safety. The trainers demonstrated how outages occur and how power is restored. The video shows what happens when something – such as a person, tree or ladder – touches a live power line. Thousands of emergency personnel in Duke Energy's service territories have attended demonstrations.

Spotlight

Duke Energy linemen and trainers recently taught first responders in St. Petersburg, Fla., and the Franklin, N.C., area about power line safety. The trainers demonstrated how outages occur and how power is restored. The video shows what happens when something – such as a person, tree or ladder – touches a live power line. Thousands of emergency personnel in Duke Energy's service territories have attended demonstrations.

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ENERGY

EDP Renewables Begins Commercial Operation of ‘Crossing TrailsWind’ Farm in the United States

EDP Renewables | May 10, 2021

The project, which has a capacity of 104 MW, is located in Colorado. With the completion of this wind farm, EDPR now operates wind farms in 17 US states, totaling 6,495 MW of installed capacity. The project's sole offtake is Tri-State, a non-profit energy supply cooperative. EDP Renováveis, SA (“EDPR”), the world's fourth-largest renewable energy producer, has begun commercial operation of the 104 MW Crossing Trails wind farm through its affiliate EDP Renewables North America LLC has started commercial operation of the 104 MW Crossing Trails wind farm. The corporation signed a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) with the non-profit energy supply cooperative Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association for this wind farm (Tri-State). The project, based in Colorado, is made up of twenty 4.3 MW wind turbines and five 3.6 MW turbines. These are among the most advanced systems ever installed in the region, distinguished by their reliability and cost-effectiveness. Annually, Crossing Trails can generate enough energy to fuel the equivalent of approximately 45,000 homes in Colorado. More than 100 employees were active in the project's commissioning, which increased jobs and created permanent roles to run and manage the wind farm. Furthermore, it will have a 12 million dollar effect on local municipalities and will return more than 20 million dollars to landowners during its life cycle. Colorado becomes the 17th US state in which EDPR NA runs a clean energy project with the start-up of Crossing Trails. The organization expects to extend its footprint in the country further through the successful completion of new PPAs that strengthen its low-risk profile and growth plan focused on the development of competitive projects with long-term visibility.EDPR presently has a gross installed capacity of 6,495 MW in the United States as of the first quarter of 2021. This project is part of EDPR's commitment to the energy transformation and its efforts to develop a Capex plan of approximately 19 billion euros as part of its overall plan to deploy approximately 20 GW of renewable energy by 2025.

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SOLAR+STORAGE

Sunstone Credit Announces Initial Fundraise to Make it Easy and Affordable for Businesses to Go Solar

Sunstone Credit | February 11, 2022

Sunstone Credit, Inc., a technology-enabled solar loan finance platform for businesses, announced the company's initial fundraise, including investments from Forbright Bank, Cross River Digital Ventures, Grotech Ventures, Early Light Ventures and the University System of Maryland Momentum Fund. In addition to their investments, Forbright Bank and Cross River will also serve as strategic partners to Sunstone, and provide the financing to back its loan portfolio. Sunstone is on a mission to enable more small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) access to solar energy through its technology-driven platform offering affordable and easy-to-understand solar loan products. This round of investment will allow Sunstone to scale its team, invest in its best-in-class technology platform and continue to grow its national network of solar developer partners. Sunstone was founded with the mission of helping more businesses go solar. We are excited to have found such an incredible group of likeminded investors to join us. Together we are committed to building a platform that will drive commercial sales growth for our solar developer partners and enable cost savings for borrowers, while contributing to a cleaner future for the planet. Additionally, we are thrilled that Forbright Bank and Cross River have elected to further their relationship with Sunstone, by not only investing, but also providing the funds to back our loans as strategic partners." Josh Goldberg, Co-Founder of Sunstone Sunstone is the creation of Goldberg and Wilson Chang, who together have decades of solar industry experience. They are joined by a co-founding team with backgrounds across climate, financial services and technology. "We have a very high regard for Josh and his terrific team and look forward to a strong and growing partnership with Sunstone," said John Delaney, Founder of Forbright Bank. "Forbright is mission aligned around decarbonization and sustainability and helping build Sunstone into a leading solar lender for the small business marketplace aligns with that mission. We look forward to working with Josh as he builds a great business that will help decarbonize the world by 2050." Sunstone's loan products are affordable, easy to understand and backed by the significant lending capabilities of banks such as Forbright Bank and Cross River that have partnered with the company. "We have worked with Josh, Wilson and the team for years as they successfully revolutionized residential solar finance," said Hillel Olivestone, Head of Corporate Development at Cross River. "The Cross River Digital Ventures team is excited to back Sunstone as they bring the same entrepreneurial spirit and technology-first approach to financial services for the SMB commercial solar market." Designed to be simple and easy to use, Sunstone's best-in-class technology platform enables solar developer partners to offer straightforward loan financing options to their SMB customers through a streamlined online application. "From an investment perspective, Sunstone is an attractive combination of strong solar industry tailwinds, highly favorable market dynamics in the commercial solar lending space and great founder-market fit," said Lawson DeVries, Managing General Partner of Grotech Ventures. "Josh and team have the bold entrepreneurial vision needed to scale the business and are already starting on second base given their previous experiences building companies in the solar industry." With energy costs rising and climate change discourse growing increasingly prevalent, more SMBs than ever are seeking to reduce their electric bill and carbon footprint by going solar and Sunstone has developed the right loan products to meet this moment. "Sunstone taps into two of the most compelling themes today: fintech and the clean energy transition," said Mike Leffer, Principal at Early Light Ventures. "At the same time, they are offering a product that both is unique within the current commercial solar finance market and has high demonstrated demand. With the team's experience spanning solar, finance and technology, we are confident in Sunstone's ability to make solar more accessible for businesses through their platform." "Creating a connective tissue between financial institutions, solar installers, and SMB borrowers is a very clever way to bring much more solar to the U.S. via SMBs. Financial institutions want to grow their loans, SMB borrowers need a simple way to finance solar, and solar installers lack easy to use financial tools to scale their businesses," said Maryland Momentum Fund Managing Director, Claire Broido Johnson. About Sunstone Credit Sunstone Credit is on a mission to democratize access to solar for small and medium sized businesses (SMBs). Sitting at the intersection of climate, finance and technology, Sunstone has built a best-in-class technology platform and partnered with leading financial institutions and a national network of solar developers to provide SMB borrowers access to simple, affordable and easy-to-understand solar loan products with flexible terms and a streamlined application process. When SMB customers go solar using Sunstone's products, they save money and reduce their carbon footprint, driving a clean, green future for all.

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SOLAR+STORAGE

In Brazil, Atlas Renewable Energy and Unipar Sign a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for Solar Energy

Atlas Renewable Energy | July 20, 2021

Atlas Renewable Energy, a global pioneer in renewable energy, and Unipar, a South American leader in chlorine, chlorides, and PVC, announced today the signing of a large-scale solar energy power purchase agreement (PPA) in Brazil. Atlas Renewable Energy's Lar do Sol – Casablanca II photovoltaic facility in Pirapora, Minas Gerais, will produce the clean solar energy supply. The Lar do Sol – Casablanca II Solar Plant, which would cover around 700 hectares, will have a capacity of 239MWp and 460,000 solar panels installed. The plant will use bi-facial module technology, which uses the reflection of the sun's rays from their front and back faces to increase the efficiency of photoelectric conversion and boost overall plant output. The project is projected to produce enough energy to power two of Unipar's facilities in Brazil. According to the average usage of a Brazilian family, Lar do Sol Casablanca II's annual energy generation will be enough to power around 261,662 dwellings. Furthermore, the plant will save roughly 40,500 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions each year. This computation is based on the GHG (Greenhouse Gases) Protocol, a methodology created by the World Resources Institute that adheres to the IPCC's methods (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change). This quantity of CO2 emissions avoided is equivalent to removing 16,200 automobiles from Sao Paulo's streets. Atlas Renewable Energy will develop, build, and operate the Lar do Sol – Casablanca II Solar Plant. Atlas Renewable Energy's track record and expertise in Latin America have positioned it as one of the fastest-growing renewable energy companies in the Americas and an essential player in the region's energy sector. Atlas' rapidly expanding footprint in the Brazilian market now includes six large-scale solar facilities totaling more than 1GW. The signing of this long-term agreement with Unipar, one of Brazil's leading chemical industries, demonstrates Atlas' capacity to collaborate with private companies to assist them reach their carbon emission reduction goals as they transition to a cleaner energy source. "Adoption of renewables is becoming a staple of good corporate responsibility, and we at Atlas offer a unique opportunity for large energy consumers to clean their energy matrix while also being sponsors of the social and environmental programmes we develop to uplift the communities in which we operate," replied Luis Pita, General Manager of Atlas Renewable Energy for Brazil. "This deal demonstrates our company's leadership in the renewable energy sector in Brazil, as we continue to implement tailor-made solutions with cutting-edge technologies, raising industry standards and giving our clients a competitive advantage. It's a pleasure to be collaborating with a national chemical leader like Unipar to help them achieve their sustainability goals." According to Mauricio Russomanno, CEO of Unipar, the agreement demonstrates the company's commitment to the future of the country and the business's survival. "This is another step toward more sustainable solutions, enhancing the company's efforts in the search for energy matrices from renewable sources, ensuring access to the critical input for our operations and producing higher competitivity through self-production. The total quantity of energy generated for Unipar will be sufficient to manufacture chlorine for the water treatment of over 60 million people ", states the president. As part of Atlas Renewable Energy's commitment to the communities in which it operates, the Lar do Sol - Casablanca II Solar Plant will employ around 1,200 people at its peak. The corporation will also implement a number of environmental and social activities, including the "we are all part of the same energy" female workforce programme. The programme focuses on promoting inclusive practises by training and developing the local female workforce. Atlas intends to have at least 15% female representation in the overall workforce during the plant's construction. This effort will provide local women with access to new career opportunities throughout the project's construction, generating a chance for economic stability while also enhancing their skill sets and potential by incorporating them into more technical jobs. About Atlas Renewable Energy Atlas Renewable Energy is a renewable energy generation firm that plans, builds, and runs long-term renewable energy projects across the Americas. The present portfolio of the company is 2.35GW of contracted projects in various phases of development, construction, or operation, with plans to expand by an additional 5GW in the next years. Atlas Renewable Energy, which was founded in early 2017, is led by an experienced team with the longest track record in the Latin American solar energy market. The organisation is known for its excellent standards in large-scale project conception, construction, and operation. Atlas Renewable Energy is a portfolio company of Actis, a significant private equity investor in the energy sector. Atlas Renewable Energy's expansion is focused on the world's largest emerging markets and economies, where it will leverage its proven development, commercialization, and structuring expertise to expedite the transition to clean energy. Every day, the organisation seeks to deliver a cleaner future by putting active engagement with the community and stakeholders at the centre of its project approach. About Unipar Unipar is a South American leader in chlorine, chlorides, and PVC, raw materials that constitute the foundation of all businesses, and is listed on the Brazilian Stock Exchange (B3 S.A. - Brazil, Bolsa, Balco). Unipar, which employs around 1,400 people in its offices and industrial operations in Cubato (SP), Santo André (SP), and Baha Blanca (Argentina), is committed to quality, safety, environmental stewardship, community inclusion, and the recognition of collaborators. Unipar has been connected and integrated with local communities throughout its 50-year history through its Community Advisory Council, which brings together neighbours, social entities, and company representatives. Furthermore, it is a pioneer in the adoption of the Open Factory Program, which keeps its plants open to visitors 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

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