British oil and gas supermajor BP says it has struck a deal to purchase 9GW of solar development projects in the United States from independent US solar developer 7X Energy – described as the biggest green energy deal to date.
BP will pay $US220 million for the pipeline of projects, which will grow BP’s pipeline of renewable energy projects from 14GW to 23GW, and will be developed through BP’s 50-50 solar joint venture Lightsource BP.
“With this purchase, we are continuing to put our strategy in action as we grow our renewables business in a deliberate and disciplined way,” said Dev Sanyal, BP executive vice president of gas and low carbon energy.
“It brings us 9GW of high-quality solar projects in markets where we can create integrated renewable energy offers through our trading and customer franchises. This is a significant step as we continue to deliver on our net zero ambition.”
The 9GW pipeline of development projects is spread across 12 US states, with the largest portfolio in Texas’ ERCOT grid area and the Midwest’s PJM grid area.
Solar projects within the larger portfolio worth 2.2GW are expected to reach Final Investment Decision (FID) by 2025, with the remaining expected to progress to FID by 2030.
Once completed, BP expects the solar projects will have the capacity to generate enough clean electricity to power the equivalent of around 1.7 million US homes, as well as support thousands of jobs throughout the construction phase of each project.
“This transaction speaks volumes about the success of our JV with bp, and how we leverage each other’s strengths to realize our ambitions for solar and a low-carbon future,” said Nick Boyle, group chief executive officer of Lightsource BP.
“It also positions Lightsource bp as a growing force in the US solar market, as we expand our portfolio across the United States.”
Dave Lawler, BP America chairman and president, said the company aims to integrate these projects with its existing onshore and offshore wind, natural gas, and trading and shipping businesses.