Solar plant in Pecos Co. soon to be up and running - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Solar plant in Pecos Co. soon to be up and running

(Source: KWES) (Source: KWES)
PECOS COUNTY, TX (KWES) -

Southern Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company has 1,000 acres in Pecos County.

It's one of the three largest owners of utility scale solar facilities in Texas. On those acres are about 1.2 million solar modules at the East Pecos Solar Facility, which produces 120 megawatts.

That's enough to power tens of thousands of homes. But right now, they're not in operation yet.

"We as Southern Power, believe in the full portfolio of energy resources," said Lizzy Yates with Southern Power. "Solar is a very important part of that mix."

The solar modules generate electricity by sunlight. As solar energy frees electrons that travel through an electrical circuit, this is how power is generated.

U.S. Representative Will Hurd toured the facility Friday. He said the Permian Basin is key for having a solar facility such as this in the area.

"I think one of the things that makes this part of the world so attractive for solar is one, sun, you need a lot of that," said Hurd. "But two, the infrastructure, you need in order to get this energy into a grid, already exists here."

As the demand for solar power across the country continues to grow, Hurd said West Texas can benefit over the next couple of years as the basin won't have to rely on others for energy needs.

"Not only is this good for our energy needs, but the economic impact these kinds of projects have in these communities, the tax revenue this generates for communities is an important resource for our cities," said Hurd.

The facility began construction back in February and is expected to operate at the end of this year.

"We're also proud to give back to the communities that we serve," said Yates. "We'll be donating $10,000 to the Scholars' Dollars program at Midland College."

"Companies like Southern Power are great citizens," said Hurd. "They do a lot for the surrounding communities."

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