Paper and packaging manufacturer WestRock announced it has entered into two virtual power purchase agreements (VPPAs) with ENGIE North America for Texas solar projects.
The agreements support two of ENGIE’s Texas solar projects — Bernard Creek in Wharton County and Chillingham Solar in Bell County — for a total of 282 MW.
The new projects comprise one element of WestRock’s strategy to pursue a science-based target (SBT) to reduce Scope 1, 2 and 3 greenhouse gas emissions by 27.5% by 2030. Schneider Electric provided advisory services and strategy management for the WestRock and ENGIE agreements.
“We are pleased to play a role in the development of clean energy from large-scale solar projects and to join forces with ENGIE and Schneider Electric to add more renewable energy to the grid,” said David B. Sewell, CEO at WestRock.
WestRock will contract 207 MW from Bernard Creek, a 230-MW solar project which is located southwest of Houston and is expected to have an annual output of approximately 500,000 MWh. The project, slated for completion in the first half of 2024, is expected to generate more than $45 million in revenue for Wharton County over its lifespan and to create more than 250 jobs during construction.
Additionally, WestRock will contract 75 MW from ENGIE’s 350-MW Chillingham Solar project. Chillingham will help support two local school districts with an estimated $70 million in revenue generated over the life of the project, of which $53 million will be paid directly to the school districts. WestRock’s share of Chillingham is expected to be approximately 200,000 MWh per year.
“We are delighted that Bernard Creek and Chillingham Solar will support WestRock’s ambitions to meet their 2030 science-based targets. ENGIE’s projects are focused on meeting the specific needs of our clients as we work together to accelerate the energy transition in North America and this agreement reflects that,” said Dave Carroll, chief renewables officer and country manager for ENGIE North America.
News item from WestRock