Leeward Renewable Energy (LRE) announced that has completed construction of its 100-MW Oak Trail Solar project near Moyock, North Carolina, and the facility has reached commercial operation. Construction began in October 2022, and Verizon Communications has supported the development of Oak Trail Solar through a long-term virtual purchase agreement.
LRE hosted a ceremonial ribbon-cutting event, in partnership with the American Clean Power Association (ACP), at the project site today to celebrate the start of operations and the benefits Oak Trail Solar will bring to the local community. The event featured comments from Chief Executive Officer of LRE, Jason Allen; LRE Board Member, Mary Doswell; ACP CEO, Jason Grumet; Nextracker President, Strategy, Software & Administration, Bruce Ledesma; Verizon SVP, Global Supply Chain & Sourcing, and Chief Sustainability Officer, Jim Gowen; and Currituck County Commissioner, Owen Etheridge.
“We are pleased to achieve commercial operation at Oak Trail Solar to help support Verizon’s sustainability goals,” said Jason Allen, LRE’s CEO. “Oak Trail Solar is another example of how LRE seeks to meaningfully contribute to the communities where we live and operate. Our engagement goes well beyond job creation, economic investment, and the generation of clean, renewable energy. We strive to build lasting partnerships with civic leaders, property owners and community members. At Oak Trail Solar, we are committed to doing just that while preserving and protecting the environment.”
Oak Trail Solar created approximately 300 jobs at peak construction and will provide long-term renewable energy jobs and significant property tax contributions to Currituck County. As part of LRE’s commitment to land stewardship, 30% of the project acreage will be filled with native vegetation and wildflowers that is utilized for pollinator habitat, screening and other ecological benefits.
LRE projects are managed across the full project lifecycle with environmental, social and cultural considerations foremost in mind. The company prioritizes U.S.-made products and looks to partner with companies that share its vision of establishing a resilient domestic renewable energy industry throughout all aspects of LRE’s business. Oak Trail Solar uses First Solar photovoltaic solar modules, which use less energy, water, and semiconductor material in their manufacturing and are designed to have a longer lifespan than other alternatives. The project also employs Nextracker’s leading solar tracker and software technology that optimizes energy capture and reliability features to protect solar panels and mitigate the adverse effects of extreme weather.
News item from Leeward Renewable Energy