NASHVILLE, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Meta Platforms, Inc. (Nasdaq: META) today announced seven new solar projects in Georgia and Tennessee totaling 720 megawatts (MWAC) to support its regional operations with 100% renewable energy. Silicon Ranch, one of the nation’s largest independent power producers, is partnering with Walton Electric Membership Corporation (EMC) and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to supply the renewable power to serve Meta’s data centers in Georgia and the Tennessee Valley, respectively. As part of the agreements, Silicon Ranch will fund, build, own, operate, and maintain the solar facilities over the life of each of the seven projects, bringing significant investment to rural communities throughout the region.
In Georgia, Walton EMC recently executed contracts with Silicon Ranch on behalf of Meta (formerly the Facebook company) for three new solar facilities totaling 560 MWAC as part of the electric cooperative’s agreement to supply Meta with 100% renewable energy. Silicon Ranch will work with Walton EMC to deliver projects in each of the next three years to support Meta’s operations.
TVA recently signed agreements with Silicon Ranch on behalf of Meta for four new solar facilities in Tennessee totaling 160 MWAC under TVA’s Green Invest program, which helps customers such as Meta meet their long-term sustainability goals with new utility-scale solar projects located within the Tennessee Valley. Silicon Ranch will partner with TVA and local power companies to deliver all four projects in 2024 to support Meta’s operations in Tennessee and Alabama.
The announcement of the seven new projects coincides with the nearing completion of two additional solar facilities by Silicon Ranch that serve Meta’s operations: the 125 MWAC DeSoto I Solar Farm in partnership with Walton EMC in Lee County, Georgia, and the 70 MWAC McKellar Solar Farm with TVA in Madison County, Tennessee. Despite supply chain constraints that caused project delays across the solar industry, Silicon Ranch placed both projects in service on schedule, a feat the company has accomplished with every project it has signed since beginning operations in 2011.
“We are proud of the work we have done with Walton EMC and TVA to accelerate the transition to renewables in Georgia and the Tennessee Valley,” said Urvi Parekh, Head of Renewable Energy at Meta. “As we continue to support our global operations with 100% renewable energy, we are pleased to expand our partnership with Silicon Ranch, a trusted partner who shares our commitment to have a positive impact on the communities where we locate.”
Including the seven projects announced today, Meta is partnering with Silicon Ranch on 16 solar facilities to serve its operations in Georgia and the Tennessee Valley. In total, the portfolio has a capacity of approximately 1,500 MWAC. Eight of the projects are now operational, generating approximately 630 MWAC of solar energy, and each of the plants integrates Silicon Ranch’s transformative Regenerative Energy® model of land management, a holistic approach to design, construction, and operations that co-locates renewable energy production with regenerative agriculture practices.
“Silicon Ranch is honored by the confidence and trust that Meta continues to place in our company to execute on their behalf, and we are grateful to be part of this compelling economic development story with them as well as with our utility partners Walton EMC and TVA,” said Reagan Farr, President and CEO of Silicon Ranch. “Meta’s commitment to support their operations with 100% renewable energy is directly responsible for our own commitment to invest more than $2.3 billion across more than a dozen rural communities in Georgia, Tennessee, and Kentucky. As a company that calls this region home, we look forward to being active members of each community for decades to come.”
“As an electric cooperative, Walton EMC is driven by our ‘concern for community’ and our devotion to serving the needs of our member-owners, and our partnership with Meta and Silicon Ranch enables us to honor our commitments to these principles and values,” said Ronnie Lee, CEO of Walton EMC. “Walton EMC is proud of the meaningful work we are doing together, and we are grateful to each of our partners for the significant investments they are making in our service territory and across the state, reinforcing and strengthening Georgia’s claim as the number one state for business.”
“TVA is building the energy system of the future, and this public-private partnership with Meta and Silicon Ranch demonstrates the strength of TVA’s public power model to attract capital investment and high-quality jobs into the communities we serve while helping businesses meet their sustainability goals,” said Doug Perry, Senior Vice President of Commercial Energy Solutions for TVA. “We thank our partners Meta and Silicon Ranch for sharing our commitment to make our region the best place in the country to live, work, and raise a family.”
The recently completed projects and the seven new facilities announced today expand Meta’s renewable energy leadership, as highlighted by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) in its recently published Solar Means Business 2022 report. According to SEIA, Meta has procured more solar and brought more solar capacity online since 2020 than any other business in the U.S.
About Silicon Ranch
Founded in 2011, Silicon Ranch is a fully integrated provider of customized renewable energy, carbon, and battery storage solutions for a diverse set of partners across North America. The company is one of the largest independent power producers in the country, with a portfolio that includes more than five gigawatts of solar and battery storage systems that are contracted, under construction, or operating across the U.S. and Canada. Silicon Ranch owns and operates every project in its portfolio and has maintained an unblemished track record of project execution, having successfully commissioned every project it has contracted in its history. In recognition of its holistic approach to land management, which the company has trademarked Regenerative Energy®, Silicon Ranch was named 2020’s “Most Forward-Thinking” company by Solar Power World. In 2021, Silicon Ranch acquired Clearloop, which helps businesses of all sizes reclaim their carbon footprint with a direct investment in building new solar projects while expanding access to clean energy. To learn more, visit siliconranch.com, regenerativeenergy.org, and clearloop.us, and follow on Facebook and Instagram.
About Walton EMC
Walton EMC is an innovative, customer-owned and -focused electric utility serving accounts in 10 Northeast Georgia counties between Atlanta and Athens. In its long history of meeting customer-owners’ needs, the cooperative established successful natural gas and security subsidiaries as well as nationally recognized solar initiatives. For more information, visit waltonemc.com.
About Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)
The Tennessee Valley Authority is a corporate agency of the United States that provides electricity for business customers and local power distributors serving nearly 10 million people in parts of seven southeastern states. TVA receives no taxpayer funding, deriving virtually all its revenues from sales of electricity. In addition to operating and investing its revenues in its electric system, TVA provides flood control, navigation, and land management for the Tennessee River system, and assists local power companies and state and local governments with economic development and job creation.