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Two solar projects for Lowndes County gain approval


MBJ staff

A Nashville, Tenn.-based solar power company has gotten approval from the Public Service Commission to build two projects in Lowndes County.

The facilities will be located near the GoldenTriangle Industrial Park and Golden Triangle Airport, Brandon Presley, commissioner for north Mississippi, said in a news release.

The projects are to be built by Silicon Ranch Corp., which was founded by former economic development officials in the administration of former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen. Silicon Ranch has built facilities across the Southeast.

The Lowndes County facilities will produce 1.6 megawatts of electricity, which will be sold to the Tennessee Valley Authority. The investment is nearly $3 million, Presley said in the release.

Mississippi is not in solar-generated electricity in a big way, but two of its largest power providers decided this year to diversify their fuel portfolios.

Entergy Mississippi announced in January that it would build three pilot facilities. Construction of one in Hinds County is underway. The other two are planned for DeSoto and Lincoln counties. The total output from those facilities could power the equivalent of 7,500 single-family residences.

Mississippi Power announced in April that is partnering with the two solar firms and the U.S. Navy to build two “farms” to produce a total of 53 megawatts in Hattiesburg and at a Naval facility in Gulfport. That is enough to power 7,800 homes, according to the company.


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