Southern Company, the premier energy provider to the U.S. Southeast, supports the development and use of cost-effective renewable energy sources. We are taking action to increase the role of renewables in the generation of electricity, consistent with the availability of resources that ensure a continued supply of reliable and affordable energy.
A wide range of renewable sources and approaches are being pursued, including new biomass, solar and landfill gas generation plants. New partnerships with power producers are adding to the renewable energy options available to customers. Over 20 research and development projects are under way to determine the potential of different renewable resources and technologies. And Southern Company is among the largest U.S. generators of hydroelectric power, one of the cleanest, most environmentally safe and affordable sources of renewable energy.
- Operating wood biomass plant, Nacogdoches Generating Facility, in Texas
- Coal-to-biomass conversions planned; new plants being evaluated
- Extensive research into coal-biomass co-firing
- Southern Power owns approximately 670 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy generating capacity that is either already in operation or under development. The company owns seven solar projects in partnership with Turner Renewable Energy and one solar project in partnership with First Solar. The company has recently announced plans to develop a solar facility in Taylor County, Georgia, which is expected to be completed in 2016, as well as the acquisition of two solar facilities in South Georgia's Decatur County, which are expected enter commercial operation in late 2015.
- Solar PV demonstration and research projects in Alabama and Georgia
- Georgia Power subsidiary nearly doubling solar power availability
- Major offshore wind feasibility study conducted with Georgia Tech
- Seeking leases for meteorological towers off Georgia coast
- Data-gathering tests in progress in Alabama, Florida and Georgia
- Growing array of renewable energy offerings to customers
- Options include power from landfill methane, biomass and solar
- Landfill gas-to-electricity plant operating in Florida
- 34 hydro facilities in Alabama and Georgia
- Ranked 7th among U.S. utilities in hydro capacity
- 16-MW incremental capacity increase planned
Renewable Energy Highlights
- Southern Power began commercial operation of Nacogdoches Generating Facility, a 100-MW biomass power plant in Sacul, Texas, in 2012. It is one of the largest biomass power plants in the U.S.
- Southern Company's Southern Power subsidiary currently owns, manages or is constructing 11 solar facilities, totaling over 670 MW of solar energy capacity in California, Georgia, Nevada, New Mexico and North Carolina.
- Southern Company is partnering with Turner Renewable Energy on the following solar, photovoltaic (PV) power plants: 30-MW Spectrum Solar Facility in Clark County, Nevada; 30-MW Cimarron Solar Facility in Cimarron, New Mexico; 139-MW Campo Verde Solar Facility in Imperial County, California; 2.5-MW Granville Solar Facility in Granville County, North Carolina; 20-MW Apex Solar Facility in North Las Vegas, Nevada; 50-MW Macho Springs Solar Facility in Luna County, New Mexico, 20-MW Adobe Solar Facility in Kern County, California.
- Through a partnership arrangement, Southern Power and First Solar own the 150-MW Solar Gen 2 Solar Facility consisting of three, 50-MW projects: Arkansas, Alhambra and Sonora. Commercial operation began in November 2014.
- Southern Power has announced plans to develop a 131-MW PV solar project in Georgia, which will be capable of generating enough electricity to help meet the energy needs of more than 21,000 homes.
- Southern Power has acquired two PV solar projects totaling 99-MW in Georgia - the 80-MW Decatur Parkway Solar Project and the 19-MW Decatur County Solar - which are expected to enter commercial operation in late 2015.
- Subsidiary Gulf Power owns and operates a 3,200-kilowatt landfill gas-to-electricity plant in Escambia County, Florida, that produces enough power to serve 900 homes.
- Subsidiary Georgia Power plans to convert a unit at Plant Mitchell, a coal-based power plant near Albany, Georgia, to biomass, pending regulatory approval.
- Subsidiary Alabama Power has been co-firing biomass grass fuel materials with coal since 2002 as part of normal operations at its Plant Gadsden, and co-milling wood in various forms (including chips and sawdust) since 2003.
- Southern Company is preparing applications for federal leases to construct meteorological towers off the Georgia coast to collect data for assessing the potential for offshore wind generation.
- A wind turbine designed by University of Alabama at Birmingham students has been erected atop the Alabama Power headquarters building to collect research data; wind data also is being collected in north Georgia.
- Georgia Power has entered into an agreement to purchase 250 MW of wind energy, effective Jan. 2016. The additional energy will provide enough electricity at peak to power more than 50,000 homes.
- Georgia Power has received regulatory approval to nearly double - to 5.4 MW - the amount of solar energy it purchases to supply its Green Energy Program.
- Georgia Power has received regulatory approval to build a 1-MW portfolio of medium-scale solar demonstration projects across the state.
- A partnership with The Westervelt Company will provide 7.5 MW of renewable energy from wood byproducts that Alabama Power will use to further diversify its mix of electricity fuel sources.
- Southern Company is one of the nation's largest generators of hydroelectric power, with a combined generating capacity of 2,758 MW. Sixteen MW of new hydro capacity planned for the next five years, and other incremental opportunities are being evaluated.