Public Utility Commission Approves Idaho Power Solar Projects


The Idaho Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has given Idaho Power a green light on five solar power projects in conjunction with Boston, Mass.-based renewable energy contractor First Wind

The contracts between the two companies are for 20 years, and the five projects are expected to generate a total of 100 megawatts, providing energy to Ada, Elmore, Owyhee and Power counties. The contracts are also expected to generate approximately $10 million in property taxes over the next 20 years, as well as 250,000 MW hours each year. According to the PUC, that's enough electricity to power almost 30,000 homes.

"We're excited to announce these agreements for new solar energy in Idaho," wrote First Wind CEO Paul Gaynor in a press release. "These five projects will deliver clean, renewable solar energy to homes and businesses in Idaho at a cost-competitive price."

Representatives of Idaho Power, First Wind and the PUC expect the projects to be completed by the end of 2016.

Meanwhile, First Wind is set to be acquired by SunEdison and TerraForm Power by the end of the first quarter of 2015.