Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced that the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality is issuing the first Permit By Rule for an 80 megawatt solar facility that will be constructed in northern Accomack County. This project will more than quadruple the amount of solar energy currently installed in the Commonwealth.
Community Energy is the developer and owner of the solar facility. Community has partnered with Amazon Web Services in a long-term power purchase agreement that enables the project to be built. The power from the Amazon Solar Farm US East will be delivered into the electrical grids that supply Amazon Web Services’ data center activities, including those located in Northern Virginia.
“The partnership between Community Energy and Amazon Web Services, which will result in the largest solar facility in the mid-Atlantic, is indicative of the types of opportunities that my Administration is working toward through our commitment to build a new Virginia economy,” said Governor McAuliffe. “The solar energy industry holds tremendous potential for economic growth in Virginia in the coming years, and I look forward to bringing more projects like this to the Commonwealth.”
“This solar project is a first for Virginia and a giant step forward for clean power on the East Coast,” said Brent Alderfer, President of Community Energy. “With this project, Virginia jumps to the lead in attracting the energy industry of the future, with cloud-technology leader Amazon Web Services as the first customer.”
“Amazon Web Services is pleased to be teaming up with Community Energy on Amazon Solar Farm US East,” said Shannon Kellogg, Director of Public Policy for Amazon. “We are excited about the impact that this project can have on the environment and the local economy in Virginia, and we thank the Governor for his strong commitment to make more renewable energy sources available in the Commonwealth.”
The permit for the solar facility was issued at Eastern Shore Community College, demonstrating the nexus between innovative opportunities in the energy sector and Governor McAuliffe’s workforce development priority to addresses employment gaps in emerging industries.