Leeward Renewable Energy, Valley Clean Energy Sign 15-year Solar-Plus-Storage Power Purchase Agreement for Willow Springs 3 Solar Facility
Project to provide 72MW of solar power, 36MW of battery storage for Valley Clean Energy customers
(From press release) Leeward Renewable Energy (Leeward) and Valley Clean Energy (VCE) announced today that they have entered into a 15-year solar-plus-storage Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) involving Leeward’s 72-megawatt (MW) solar and 36 MW (144 megawatt-hour) battery storage Willow Springs 3 facility in Kern County, California.
VCE’s board of directors approved the PPA on October 14. The Willow Springs 3 project will supply enough reliable, clean electricity for approximately 27% of VCE’s 125,000 customers in Yolo County, California, by the end of 2023. The agreement will also support VCE in achieving its goal of having a 100 percent carbon-neutral portfolio by 2030.
As part of the agreement, Leeward will contribute to VCE’s local workforce development and sustainability efforts in Yolo and Kern counties to support local hiring and training.
“Valley Clean Energy is proud to announce our partnership with Leeward in the Willow Springs 3 project,” said Dan Carson, VCE’s board chair and a Davis City Councilmember. “The urgency of climate change demands that we add more new renewables to the grid, but our mission does not stop there.
“Bringing additional benefits to our community is a priority for VCE, and this agreement strengthens our communities where we need it most—with clean energy and good jobs.”
Willow Springs 3 will generate significant economic benefits for Kern County and create about 300 high-quality local jobs during construction. This announcement builds on Leeward’s momentum in the Antelope Valley, marking its fourth PPA serving the renewable energy needs of leading Community Choice Aggregators (CCAs) from its solar projects in Kern County.
“Willow Springs 3 will further enhance our ability to provide Californians with a cleaner, more reliable power grid,” said Kathryn Arbeit, Leeward’s senior vice president of development. “We are very excited to partner with Valley Clean Energy to not only expand the use of renewable energy throughout California, but also deliver additional benefits to the residents of Kern and Yolo counties through local workforce engagement and sustainability initiatives.”
Leeward will own and operate the facility. Construction will begin in December 2021 and the project is expected to begin delivering energy to Valley Clean Energy by December 2023.
About Valley Clean Energy: Valley Clean Energy is a not-for-profit public agency formed in June 2018 to provide electrical generation service to customers in Woodland, Davis, Winters, and the unincorporated areas of Yolo County. VCE’s mission is to source cost-competitive clean electricity while providing product choice, price stability, energy efficiency, greenhouse gas emission reductions and reinvestment in the communities we serve.
About Leeward Renewable Energy, LLC: Leeward Renewable Energy is a leading renewable energy company that owns and operates a portfolio of 22 renewable energy facilities across nine states totaling approximately 2,000 megawatts of generating capacity. Leeward is actively developing new wind, solar, and energy storage projects in energy markets across the U.S., with 17 gigawatts under development spanning more than 100 projects. Leeward is a portfolio company of OMERS Infrastructure, an investment arm of OMERS, one of Canada’s largest defined benefit pension plans with C$114 billion in net assets (as of June 30, 2021). For more information, visit www.leewardenergy.com.