(LOUISVILLE, Ky.) – Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company today filed with the Kentucky Public Service Commission for approval of three contracts that could mean one giant step forward for solar energy generation in Kentucky, with construction of the largest solar array in the Bluegrass.
The filing consists of two separate renewable power agreements with two of the utilities’ largest industrial customers — Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc., which operates the world’s largest Toyota manufacturing facility in Georgetown; and Dow Silicones Corporation, which operates a facility in Carrollton. The third contract is for the power purchase agreement between LG&E and KU and Rhudes Creek Solar, LLC, a wholly owned entity of ibV Energy Partners, for energy to be generated from a new 100-megawatt solar photovoltaic facility to be built in Hardin County.
The proposed contracts are the result of LG&E and KU’s ongoing efforts to enhance renewable offerings for residential, commercial and industrial customers to help meet their various renewable energy goals. Approved by the KPSC in 2019, the utilities’ Green Tariff rolled their Green Energy and Business Solar programs under one tariff and provided a third option — the “Renewable Power Agreement” — for customers interested in purchasing renewable power. To support these initiatives, in early 2019, the utilities issued a request for proposals for up to 200 MW of renewable energy. The Rhudes Creek Solar facility proposed by ibV Energy Partners was selected as the winning bidder.
The utilities will supply Toyota with 50% of the facility’s energy output, Dow with 25%, and the remaining 25% will be used to serve the utilities’ electric customers. Due to the variable nature of the renewable energy, to ensure reliability, all customers will continue to be served by LG&E and KU’s other generating resources. The 20-year contracts lock in a flat price per kilowatt hour that is expected to translate into cost savings for customers over the life of the agreements.
The solar facility is expected to be completed and commercially available by 2022.