Macho Springs Solar facility, located in Luna County, New Mexico, is a 50 MW AC ground mounted single-axis tracking PV system. This project is a result of a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Macho Springs Solar, LLC (owned by Southern Company subsidiary Southern Power and Turner Renewable Energy). The seller agreed to provide EPE with solar energy, associated capacity attributes and Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs).
Project Type: First Solar thin-film solar panels
Project Location: Luna County, New Mexico
Project Owner: Macho Springs Solar LLC
Fuel Source: Solar
Project Capacity: 50 MW AC
Commercial Operation Date: May 2014
Construction of the facility began July 1, 2013 after EPE received an approval from the New Mexico Public Regulatory Commission.
Macho Springs is located on almost 600 acres of land, or about the size of 300 football fields. It generates power from 704,160 photovoltaic solar modules manufactured by First Solar. The facility was interconnected to EPE 345-kV Luna-Springerville transmission line via Macho Spring Substation and began commercial operation in May 2014. It is now the largest solar project in New Mexico and, at the time of commercial operation, it was the largest single axis tracking PV solar facility in the world. This project alone doubled EPE’s solar energy portfolio mix. EPE’s renewable energy mix now stands at 5.2% of its total dedicated generating capacity.
Macho Springs Solar facility also resulted in EPE becoming a national leader when considered based on a solar energy per customer basis. Currently, the company’s dedicated solar facilities yield approximately 279 watts of renewable energy per customer.
In addition, Macho Springs Solar Power Facility will generate enough clean energy to power more than 18,000 average homes. This project will displace more than 40,000 metric tons of CO2, the equivalent of taking 7,500 cars off the road, and will displace more than 340,000 metric tons of water consumption annually in southern New Mexico and west Texas.