The Arkansas Public Service Commission has approved the Entergy Arkansas Driver Solar Project, a new 250 MW AC renewable energy plant developed by Lightsource bp, which will be located on approximately 2,100 acres near Osceola in Mississippi County.
Driver Solar will be the utility’s largest solar facility, capable of generating enough energy to power more than 40,000 homes.
“Driver Solar adds highly economic, renewable generation to our portfolio, further diversifying our energy mix in a way that meets our customers’ evolving expectations,” says Laura Landreaux, president and CEO of Entergy Arkansas. “It is a key contribution toward business expansion in northeast Arkansas, and we are excited to be a part of it.”
“We are listening to our customers as we develop and execute our generation strategy for the future,” Landreaux adds. “We are privileged to be able to work closely with U. S. Steel Corporation to develop sustainable solutions to help them meet their objective of producing steel using renewable electricity while simultaneously lowering rates over the long term for all 728,000-plus Entergy Arkansas customers.”
The Driver Solar site is located along Arkansas Highway 61 near Carson Lake Road and Arkansas Highway 198, just south of Osceola, and will be situated adjacent to both the U.S. Steel’s Big River Steel facility and the recently announced $3 billion expansion. Lightsource bp has completed development and permitting of the solar field and will build the facility under a build-transfer agreement with Entergy Arkansas. Driver Solar has an expected completion date in late 2024.
“This project with Entergy Arkansas and Lightsource bp illustrates the importance of partnerships,” comments Richard Fruehauf, U.S. Steel’s senior vice president and chief strategy and sustainability officer. “Driver Solar not only helps us meet our robust sustainability goals, but it will also help us deliver sustainable steel solutions for our customers. The renewable energy generated will power the production of verdeX, our advanced sustainable steel product, which is composed of up to 90 percent recycled steel content, as well as other products produced at our Big River Works facility.”