Innovative Solar 46 wants interim permission for project construction

Innovative Solar 46 LLC on Oct. 16 asked the North Carolina Utilities Commission to let it resume construction of its 80 MW (ac) solar project while some issues are worked out about additional project acres that were not approved by the commission before construction started.

On Oct. 8, the commission ordered a halt to construction while the State Clearinghouse seeks input from various state agencies on the additional, unapproved acres. The company in its Oct. 16 request asked for permission to perform limited construction activities, including construction of perimeter fencing, erosion control measures, pile installation, equipment pads and underground wiring on the extra 83 acres while that review is completed.

The commission had in September 2014 granted Innovative Solar 46 (IS46) a certificate of public convenience and necessity (CPCN) to build this facility, the company noted. It needs this limited notice to proceed with construction to allow it to continue development work that is critical to achieving commercial operation by December 2015.

“Further, the State Clearinghouse’s evaluation of the Company’s original CPCN application determined no additional Environmental Policy Act review or action was required and Movant has similarly determined that no recognized environmental conditions exist on the additional 83 acres,” the company added. “Movant commits to proceed with Limited Construction at its own risk, pending a final Commission action on its request to amend its CPCN.”

This project is located at 1000 Roslin Farm Road in Hope Mills, North Carolina. Construction is underway on the approximately 450 acres covered in the existing CPCN approval. The company noted that it is not requesting authority to install the solar photovoltaic modules (i.e., the power generation component of the facility) on the additional acreage through the limited construction authority requested in the Oct. 16 motion.

Innovative Solar 46 was one of several project companies founded by Innovative Solar Systems LLC to develop solar projects in North Carolina, with this being one of the largest of those projects.

On Sept. 9, the project company filed a letter with the commission stating that its new owner is Entropy Investment Management LLC. On Oct.  2, the company filed a letter with the commission stating that it has determined that the original developer of the facility amended the original lease in May 2015 to add additional acreage to the facility site, bringing the total leased area within which the facility will be constructed to about 532 acres.

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.