NextEra seeks permit for 62-MW solar project in Minnesota

Marshall Solar LLC applied March 4 at the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission for a Site Permit for the Marshall Solar Energy Project, a 62.25-MW solar energy facility that would be located near Marshall, Minnesota.

Marshall Solar is a wholly owned subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources LLC, which is a unit of NextEra Energy (NYSE: NEE).

The Marshall Solar Energy Project will be sited on approximately 510 acres of agricultural land approximately four miles east of Marshall in Lyon County. The project will interconnect to the adjacent Lyon County Substation owned and operated by Northern States Power d/b/a Xcel Energy. Marshall Solar said it selected this site due to its close proximity to existing and planned transmission facilities, existing road infrastructure, and flat, unobstructed terrain.

In order to utilize the 30% Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) available to eligible solar projects, Marshall Solar plans to start construction of the project in spring 2016, with commercial operation by the end of 2016. To meet this construction schedule, Marshall Solar requested that a Site Permit be issued no later than January 2016.

In April 2014, Northern States Power (NSP) issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) seeking to acquire up to 100 MW of large-scale photovoltaic (PV) solar generation resources from projects having a combined capacity of 5 MW (ac) or larger. Projects solicited through this RFP process were sought to fulfill the requirements of the Solar Energy Standard in Minnesota, which requires 1.5% of a public utility’s 2020 retail sales to come from solar energy resources. NSP required a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for solicited projects.

Marshall Solar submitted a proposal and NSP selected it. In October 2014, NSP filed a request with the commission seeking approval of the project’s PPA. At its Feb. 12 agenda meeting, the commission orally approved the PPA between NSP and Marshall Solar. A written order from the commission is pending.

A project contact is: Brandon Stankiewicz, Director-Development, NextEra Energy Resources LLC. 700 Universe Boulevard, Juno Beach, Florida, 33408, Telephone (561) 304-5775, Brandon.stankiewicz@nee.com.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.