Solar Farm in Pecos County

PECOS COUNTY – Ground has broken on the Barilla Solar Project, a 22-megawatt solar plant by First Solar Inc. The project will be located on a 200-acre site off Hovey Rd. in the western part of Fort Stockton, according to Doug May, Fort Stockton Economic Development Corporation Director .

Commercial operations will begin by mid-2014, and a future expansion plan will increase capacity to 50-megawatts.

First Solar Inc. is going forward without a power purchase agreement or an agreement to sell the energy produced from the plant to a buyer, according to Steve Krum, director of corporate communications for First Solar.

Company officials are working to secure a contract with the state to send the power to larger metropolitan areas like Austin and Dallas, and then expand the services to local cities and larger commercial and industrial users, said Krum.

Pecos County is also home to the Sherbino 2 Wind Farm, owned and operated by BP Wind Energy. The 60 wind turbines in the area can produce 2.5 megawatts of power at any given time and in total, the entire farm could generate enough electricity to power about 45,000 homes.

“One thing to think about when your peak production for the turbines is at night, and the peak (for the solar farm) is during the day,” said May. “They can share lines and not intersect.”

West Texas produces 75 percent more direct solar radiation than east Texas, according to the State Energy Conservation Office.  Solar Farm in Pecos County

Read more at the Odessa American.

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