Electrify America (EA), which is one of the largest EV charging providers in the United States, broke ground on its massive, 75-megawatt (MW) “Solar Glow 1” photovoltaic project in San Bernardino County, California.
The renewable energy plant built by Terra-Gen is expected to go online towards the end of the summer with an estimated output of 225,000 megawatt-hours of energy per year after completion.
According to the official press release, Electrify America is purchasing and retiring all bundled environmental certificates associated with the new solar project over a 15-year period, shifting away from the business-as-usual approach of buying environmental certificates from a third-party supplier on an unbundled basis, which “does less to support additional renewable energy generation.” In other words, Terra-Gen is building the site and EA is buying the credits associated with it.
“Electrify America has always been focused on driving sustainability forward, which extends beyond electric vehicles and charging and into the energy needed to power the EV revolution. Our customers can feel proud that every charge they make on our network is backed by 100% renewable energy, and today’s groundbreaking of Solar Glow 1 showcases our future and represents our company’s values,” said Rob Barrosa, vice president of technology at Electrify America.
During the 15-year virtual power purchase agreement (VPPA), EA wants its investment in “Solar Glow 1” to make up for an estimated two million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions, or the equivalent of planting nearly 40 million trees.
“The groundbreaking of Solar Glow 1 is an important step towards additional annual renewable energy generation comparable to the energy used by over 20,000 American homes annually,” said Jigar Shah, EA’s head of energy services.
Electrify America operates 800 EV charging stations in the United States, with a total of almost 3,500 DC fast chargers and over 100 Level 2 chargers. According to the company’s website, it plans to open 112 additional stations in the future, which will bring the total to 912 stations country-wide. By comparison, Tesla operates around 1,600 Supercharger stations in the US.