UK, North American Stainless, UofL, The Chemours Company and Dow to receive renewable energy through LG&E and KU offering
(LOUISVILLE, Ky.) — Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company today filed with the Kentucky Public Service Commission contracts to provide renewable energy to five major organizations in their service territories. The contracts with the University of Kentucky, North American Stainless, the University of Louisville, The Chemours Company and Dow will supply the entities with solar energy from a 125-megawatt solar facility to be constructed in western Kentucky.
The filing with the KPSC is made up of five separate renewable power agreements (RPAs) — one with each entity. The agreements are the result of each company’s participation in LG&E and KU’s Green Tariff Option 3. The offering is one of LG&E and KU’s ongoing efforts to enhance renewable options for residential, commercial and industrial customers to help meet their various renewable energy goals. Approved by the KPSC in 2019, the utilities’ Green Tariff rolls the LG&E and KU Green Energy and Business Solar programs under one tariff and provides a third option — the “Renewable Power Agreement” — for customers interested in purchasing renewable power.
The contracts and the resulting solar facility continue LG&E and KU’s advancement of RPAs with major organizations that began in 2020; rank among the largest solar projects planned for Kentucky; and demonstrate a substantial commitment to sustainable energy by some of the commonwealth’s most prominent companies and educational institutions.
Based on the agreements, the utilities will supply UK with 44% of the facility’s energy output, the biggest portion of its generation. North American Stainless will be served with 36% output from the facility. The University of Louisville and The Chemours Company will each be supplied with 8% of the generation. Dow, which has already committed to receiving 25% of the energy output from a separate facility as part of a 2020 RPA, will receive 4% of the output from this newest facility.
“Creating customized solutions that support our customers’ increased demand for renewable energy is a key objective for our business,” said David Sinclair, LG&E and KU vice president-Energy Supply and Analysis. “We’re committed to providing cost-effective, innovative options, that carefully integrate renewable sources into the system and enhance the economic vitality of Kentucky while also maintaining the safe, reliable service our customers depend on.”
“This project is another example of the power of partnership to achieve goals that will not only benefit our institution but the Commonwealth we seek to advance,” said Eric N. Monday, UK’s executive vice president for finance and administration. “A priority for the University of Kentucky is continually finding more sustainable approaches to our energy needs. That benefits UK, but also benefits the state we serve as we seek, with partners, such as LG&E and KU, to create a sustainable energy future for Kentucky as well.”
“The Acerinox Group worldwide and North American Stainless locally are committed to making sustainable electrical generation a viable part of their energy portfolio, as demonstrated by our support of this project” said Cristobal Fuentes, CEO of North American Stainless.
“At the University of Louisville, we take seriously our commitment to integrate sustainability into everything we do,” said University President Neeli Bendapudi. “Through this contract, more than 30% of the energy at our Belknap Campus and over 15% of UofL’s total electricity demand will be met by solar power. This alone will cut our greenhouse gas emissions by another 9% from 2020 levels, advancing our efforts to shrink the university’s carbon footprint to zero by 2050.”
“Chemours’ Louisville site produces key raw materials for both our Thermal & Specialized Solutions and Advanced Performance Materials businesses, and we’re excited that it will benefit from this new solar facility,” said Sheryl Telford, chief sustainability officer and vice president of environment, health and safety for Chemours. “Chemours is committed to integrating renewable energy in a broader, deeper way across our sites as part of our achieving our goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an absolute 60% by 2030; and partnering with LG&E and KU for this agreement supports reaching that goal.”
“Dow appreciates the opportunity to work with LG&E and KU to continue to add cost-effective renewable power to our energy portfolio in Kentucky,” said Edward Stones, senior business director of Dow Feedstocks and Energy. “As one of the leading purchasers of clean power in the chemical industry and among the top 20 clean energy purchasers of corporations globally, we continually pursue opportunities to move our sites to cleaner, more cost-effective power while ensuring reliable operations."
As part of a request for proposals issued in January, renewable power provider BrightNight was selected as the winning bidder. LG&E and KU will purchase the power to be provided from a solar facility BrightNight will construct in McCracken County, Kentucky, near Paducah.
“We’re excited to support LG&E and KU’s leadership in decarbonized power investment with our industry-leading project. In addition to the clean renewable power produced, the project will also generate significant local economic investment and job creation, making it a model of the clean power market transformation,” said Martin Hermann, BrightNight CEO.
Costs associated with the facility are covered solely by the RPA participants receiving the energy through 20-year contract agreements. There is no cost to other LG&E or KU customers, who will not receive energy from the facility. The solar facility is expected to be completed and commercially available by 2025.
Through partnerships like these and sustainable efforts across their business, LG&E and KU are committed to advancing a renewable energy future and empowering their customers and communities to do the same. Together with parent company PPL Corporation, LG&E and KU have adopted a goal to reduce CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions across its business operations to net zero by 2050 with interim targets of 70% reduction from 2010 levels by 2035 and an 80% reduction by 2040.
Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company, part of the PPL Corporation (NYSE: PPL) family of companies, are regulated utilities that serve more than 1.3 million customers and have consistently ranked among the best companies for customer service in the United States. LG&E serves 332,000 natural gas and 425,000 electric customers in Louisville and 16 surrounding counties. KU serves 564,000 customers in 77 Kentucky counties and five counties in Virginia. More information is available at www.lge-ku.com and www.pplweb.com.