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Canadian Solar Inc. (“Canadian Solar”) (NASDAQ: CSIQ) today announced its wholly-owned subsidiary, Recurrent Energy, LLC (“Recurrent Energy”), commenced construction on the 144 MWac Pflugerville Solar Project located in Travis County, Texas.
Recurrent Energy signed a Power Purchase Agreement (“PPA”) with Austin Energy in 2018 for the Pflugerville Solar Project to provide low-cost solar power to the utility’s customers for 15 years following the start of operation. This PPA supports Austin Energy’s renewable energy goals which commit the utility to cost-effectively reduce emissions and includes plans to exit from its coal-fired power generation by the end of 2022. Austin Energy serves more than 500,000 customers in the City of Austin, as well as several neighboring areas of Travis County and Williamson County.
“We are thrilled about this partnership with Recurrent Energy on the Pflugerville Solar Project,” said Jackie Sargent, Austin Energy General Manager. “The project not only expands our renewable portfolio and advances our climate protection goals, it is also located near our customer base. The solar project will also deliver affordable energy to our customers and it demonstrates Austin Energy’s continued dedication to fiscal responsibility and environmental leadership. This project is a win-win.”
By partnering with Austin Energy on the Pflugerville Solar Project, Recurrent Energy is further expanding its footprint in Texas. With the resources and capabilities to deliver customized clean energy products and project configurations for a wide variety of customers, Recurrent Energy’s Texas partnerships to date include vertically-integrated utilities, a leading ERCOT load serving entity, and multiple C&I offtakers.
The Pflugerville Solar Project is expected to create long-term permanent jobs to support the operation and maintenance of the power plant, as well as more than 350 construction jobs of which at least 50% will be performed by local workers. The project will also have a positive economic impact on the local community by providing tax revenues for Travis County and the Elgin ISD, which will total approximately $350 million throughout the life of the project. Once operational, the Pflugerville Solar Project is expected to generate enough low-cost clean electricity to power the equivalent of approximately 25,000 Texas homes.
“This is an incredible accomplishment given the ongoing financing and construction challenges due to the pandemic. It demonstrates the dedication and capabilities of our Recurrent team, both in the tax equity financing and on-the-ground execution, and the resilience of all our partners to overcome the unique challenges together,” said Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Solar. “We are pleased to partner again with Austin Energy as we share their commitment to provide low-cost clean energy to customers. We appreciate our trusted partners, such as U.S. Bank, CIT, Nord/LB, Rabobank, and Zions Bank, who helped to bring this project to fruition and thank the local Travis County community for their continued support through the development process.”
To support construction of the Pflugerville Solar Project, Recurrent Energy recently closed debt and tax equity financing totaling over $234 million. The tax equity financing was provided by U.S. Bank and the debt financing was provided by a bank club led by CIT Bank (“CIT”), which included Norddeutsche Landesbank (“Nord/LB”), Rabobank, and Zions Bank.
“Recurrent Energy is well recognized as a top developer of renewable energy projects,” said Mike Lorusso, managing director and group head for CIT’s Power and Energy unit. “We are pleased to work them on this financing and proud to play a continuing role in supporting the expansion of renewable power throughout the U.S.”
Recurrent Energy is a leader in innovative corporate and project financings, including letter of credit facilities and a distinctive safe harbor loan structure. Employing a tailored and flexible approach enables Recurrent Energy to successfully execute best-in-class projects, while maximizing value for customers, investors, and local communities.
About Austin Energy
Customer Driven. Community Focused.
Austin Energy, the City of Austin’s electric utility, lights a brighter future for more than 500,000 customer accounts and more than one million residents in Greater Austin. The utility’s commitment to providing value powers the community and the innovation and culture that has made Austin a destination city. Austin Energy has powered the community for 125 years, delivering safe, affordable, reliable energy and excellent customer service. The publicly owned utility will continue to shine a light into the future. For more information about Austin Energy, visit austinenergy.com.
About Recurrent Energy
Recurrent Energy is a leading utility-scale solar and storage project developer, delivering competitive, clean electricity to large energy buyers. Based in the U.S., Recurrent Energy is a wholly owned subsidiary of Canadian Solar Inc. and functions as Canadian Solar’s North American project development arm. Recurrent Energy has approximately 5 GW of solar and storage projects in development in the U.S. Additional details are available at www.recurrentenergy.com.
About Canadian Solar Inc.
Canadian Solar was founded in 2001 in Canada and is one of the world’s largest solar power companies. It is a leading manufacturer of solar photovoltaic modules and provider of solar energy solutions and has a geographically diversified pipeline of utility-scale solar power projects in various stages of development. Over the past 19 years, Canadian Solar has successfully delivered over 46 GW of premium-quality, solar photovoltaic modules to customers in over 160 countries. Canadian Solar is one of the most bankable companies in the solar industry, having been publicly listed on NASDAQ since 2006. For additional information about the Company, follow Canadian Solar on LinkedIn or visit www.canadiansolar.com.
Canadian Solar’s Safe Harbor/Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. These statements are made under the “Safe Harbor” provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by such terms as “believes,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “intends,” “estimates,” the negative of these terms, or other comparable terminology. Factors that could cause actual results to differ include general business and economic conditions and the state of the solar industry; governmental support for the deployment of solar power; future available supplies of high-purity silicon; demand for end-use products by consumers and inventory levels of such products in the supply chain; changes in demand from significant customers; changes in demand from major markets such as Japan, the U.S., India and China; changes in customer order patterns; changes in product mix; capacity utilization; level of competition; pricing pressure and declines in average selling prices; delays in new product introduction; delays in utility-scale project approval process; delays in utility-scale project construction; delays in the completion of project sales; continued success in technological innovations and delivery of products with the features customers demand; shortage in supply of materials or capacity requirements; availability of financing; exchange rate fluctuations; litigation and other risks as described in the Company’s SEC filings, including its annual report on Form 20-F filed on Form 20-F filed on April 28, 2020. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee future results, level of activity, performance, or achievements. Investors should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. All information provided in this press release is as of today’s date, unless otherwise stated, and Canadian Solar undertakes no duty to update such information, except as required under applicable law.