Ørsted Celebrates Commencement of First Co-located Wind and Solar Center in Bee County, TX

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 6/12/2024, Location: North America

Ørsted, a leading U.S. renewable energy company, today celebrated the official commencement of the Helena Energy Center, a 518 MW co-located wind and solar facility in Bee County that will generate enough power for over 110,000 homes and businesses annually – nearly three and a half times the county's population and over ten times the county's number of residences. As Ørsted's first co-located project in the U.S. and globally, Helena Wind Farm will generate 268MW of wind power, while Sparta Solar will generate 250MW of solar power annually.

Helena Energy Center is part of Ørsted's $20 billion dollar investment in the U.S. to build out more domestic energy generation. To celebrate the economic benefits the project stands to bring to the local community and the significant power it will contribute towards Texas' grid reliability, Ørsted hosted a celebration attended by partners, landowners, community members, and local and state elected officials at Helena's facility comprised of sixty-six wind turbines and over 600,000 solar panels in Mineral.

"This project should come as welcome news to all Texans as it provides significant clean power to our state at a time when all eyes are on grid reliability," said Texas Senator Morgan Lamantia, who represents Bee County. "I'm especially proud that the Bee County community will also benefit from workforce opportunities, public school support, and funding for rural areas like ours."

Construction of the Helena Energy Center created approximately 500 construction jobs and will also require additional roles for operation and maintenance of the wind and solar farms over the next several decades. The project spans over 18,000 acres and includes 40 participating landowners, who are expected to receive a combined $4 million annually in landowner payments over the projects' lifetimes.

"We deeply appreciate the collaboration with Bee County leadership, community members and landowners, without whom this project would not be possible," said Trevor Sholly, Head of Onshore Project Execution at Ørsted. "Ørsted is proud to be a long-term partner of the community for years to come."

The project represents a nearly half billion-dollar investment in Bee County and will generate tens of millions in tax revenue that will enhance County and School services without raising taxes. In fact, Helena Wind and Sparta Solar facilities are expected to contribute over $115 million in property tax revenue over the projects' lifetimes.

"Our schools, infrastructure, and county tax structure will receive tremendous contributions by way of property tax revenues from the Helena Energy Center," said County Commissioner Dennis DeWitt. "Ørsted has been a good neighbor in the Bee County community, and we look forward to maintaining a positive and open relationship in the years to come."


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