BP has started construction on its 187MWdc Peacock Solar project, located 10 miles north of Corpus Christi in San Patricio County, Texas, helping support the global transition to lower carbon energy. According to BP, Peacock will sell all of the electricity it generates under a long-term power purchase agreement to Gulf Coast Growth Ventures (GCGV), a joint venture between ExxonMobil and SABIC, which produces materials used to manufacture clothes, food containers, packaging, agricultural film and construction materials.
Located near the GCGV complex, Peacock will supply power directly to the facility. Once complete, the installation will generate enough renewable energy annually to power the equivalent of 34,000 homes. According to the company, the project is expected to create around 300 jobs during construction and provide more than $25 million in tax revenue over the first 25 years of the project’s life.
BP notes that PCL Construction, the main engineering, procurement and construction contractor for the project, will install ultra-low carbon solar panels and trackers from US-based manufacturers First Solar and GameChange Solar, respectively.
Peacock, according to the company, will also be home to a range of agricultural and biodiversity activities, including:
- planting vegetation under and around the solar panels, including native plant species beneficial to pollinators and other wildlife;
- aiming to improve habitat value, species composition, soil health and overall ecosystem functions at the solar farm; and
- sheep grazing at the site to benefit the local rural economy and keep the farmland in production – such practices are known as agrivoltaics.
BP says solar plays an important role in its renewables and power transition growth engine. Peacock is part of BP’s aim to invest in and build renewable energy capacity of 50 gigawatts (GW) by 2030. BP says it anticipates that the project will meet its expected returns for renewable power.