NEW: 279-megawatt solar project coming to Lawrence County

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Installing solar panels” by OregonDOT is licensed under CC BY 2.0

All the sunshine that we’ve been getting in North Alabama is about to be put to work.

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) announced today that the Lawrence County Solar Project is getting a lot of advanced solar panels. Here’s what’s happening.

279 megawatts of not-so-average solar panels

TVA Solar Rendering
This rendering showcases how sleek this project will be. (Tennessee Valley Authority)

Lawrence County Solar Project is a huge center of solar investment in Alabama—$1.1 billion huge.

Yesterday, the TVA announced a big step for the solar project. First Solar, an Arizona-based solar manufacturer, is supplying 279 megawatts (MWDC) of solar panels toward the project’s completion.

But these aren’t your average solar panels. They’re advanced thin film photovoltaic modules, and they’re some of the most eco-friendly solar panels around. In fact, they have, “the lowest carbon and water footprint of any commercially available PV technology today” (TVA).

“TVA remains committed to investing in the energy system of the future for the benefit of the people of the Tennessee Valley that we serve and are pleased to work with First Solar.”

Roger Waldrep, vice president, TVA Major Project

Nearby in Colbert County is the largest solar project in the state—the Muscle Shoals solar PV project. With the new developments in Lawrence County, TVA is taking even more big steps toward their sustainable energy efforts.

What this means for renewable energy in North Alabama

At its completion—expected in 2027—the Lawrence County Solar Project will be a huge part of the TVA’s efforts toward expanding renewable energy North Alabama.

“Through our work with First Solar, TVA will continue to integrate more renewable generation into our overall portfolio with solar technology developed and manufactured in America.”

Roger Waldrep, vice president, TVA Major Project

Lawrence County also happens to be home to First Solar’s new manufacturing facility—a $1.1 billion investment. This 3.5 gigawatt (GWDC) project is a large part of First Solar’s expansion from 6.5 to 10.9 GWDC of annual nameplate capacity, expected to be complete by 2026.

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Sarah Gronberg
Sarah Gronberg
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