Entergy’s (NYSE:ETR) Entergy Arkansas is seeking approval in Arkansas to build and operate a new 115-kV switching station, consisting of two 115-kV transmission line segments and a 115-kV, 3-breaker ring bus arrangement, as well as other associated facilities to provide a generation access point to a new 81 MW solar photovoltaic generation facility being built by Stuttgart Solar in Arkansas County.
The company on Jan. 19 filed with the Arkansas Public Service Commission (APSC) an application for a certificate of public convenience and necessity (CCN) in relation to the project.
The proposed electrical facilities would be built on existing Entergy Arkansas transmission right of way (ROW) and on lands purchased by Stuttgart Solar, the company said, adding that no additional ROW will be required.
The line segments would be about 260 feet long, the company said, adding that the proposed switching site is about 0.2 miles north of the intersection of Goodwin Road and Holdridge Road in the SW1/4 SE1/4 Section 16, Township 3 South, Range 4 West, Arkansas County. The two connecting line segments would be located along the east side of Goodwin Road, in the northeast quadrant of the intersect point with the Stuttgart Ricuskey substation to Gillett substation 115-kV transmission line and Goodwin Road.
According to the direct testimony on behalf of the company of John Ellis III, project manager in Project Management and Construction with Entergy Arkansas, to accommodate an in-service date of Dec. 1, 2017, the company requests an order approving the CCN by May 30, which would allow final scoping, design and material procurement to begin in 3Q16. Construction of the proposed electrical facilities would begin in 4Q16, with completion in 4Q17, Ellis said, adding that final testing, check-out and in-service date are scheduled for completion by Dec. 1, 2017.
All of the costs for the proposed electrical facilities are the responsibility of Stuttgart Solar, Entergy Arkansas said.
The company said that operation of the proposed electrical facilities would be coordinated by the system operations center via supervisory control with oversight by the Midcontinent ISO (MISO).
The property and easement needed for the proposed electrical facilities would be furnished by Stuttgart Solar and consist of about three acres that will be designed with two access entrances to Goodwin Road.
Construction, operation and maintenance of the proposed electrical facilities along the proposed route would result in minimal adverse environmental impact to the natural, cultural, residential, commercial, recreational, and industrial environment, the company added.
Discussing the facilities’ need, the company said that Stuttgart Solar is building its 81 MW solar photovoltaic generation facility adjacent to the Stuttgart Ricuskey to Gillett 115-kV Transmission Line, on a 500-acre tract of land about seven miles southeast of Stuttgart. In an order issued last September in Docket No. 15-014-U, the APSC approved as being in the public interest a 20-year purchase power agreement between Entergy Arkansas and Stuttgart Solar, the company said.
Entergy Arkansas and MISO also have negotiated a generator interconnection agreement with Stuttgart Solar, the company said, adding that it plans to connect the solar facility to the transmission grid through the proposed switching station.
Entergy Arkansas noted that it was retained to perform a facility study for a new interconnection substation to connect the new generating facility to the Entergy Arkansas transmission system. That study identified the facilities necessary to physically connect the Stuttgart Solar generator, the company said, noting that those facilities – the proposed electrical facilities – are the subject of the application.
The company also noted that once operational, the proposed facilities would have little, if any, adverse impacts on the surrounding environment. The facilities would be built completely in rural topography, with minimal residential property located in the area and no planned subdivisions, and would use existing Entergy Arkansas transmission ROW and lands purchased by Stuttgart Solar, the company said.