240-MW solar project replacing Louisiana coal-fired power plant

DE Shaw renewable investments (DESRI) signed a long-term renewable energy purchase agreement with Cleco Power, a central Louisiana electric utility, to build a 240 MWAC solar project at the recently retired Dolet Hills coal-fired power plant in DeSoto Parish, Louisiana.

The Dolet Hills Solar Project joins Cleco’s growing renewable energy fleet and follows the company’s recent announcement of Project Diamond Vault, a decarbonization initiative to build a carbon capture facility at the central Louisiana Brame Energy Center.

“This solar project is another step forward in Cleco’s journey to become Louisiana’s leading clean energy company,” said Bill Fontenot, president and CEO of Cleco Corporate Holdings. “This project continues our efforts to reduce our carbon footprint while serving our customers affordably and reliably.”

Pending project approval, Dolet Hills will be one of the largest solar facilities in Louisiana and will have invested more than $250 million to power approximately 45,000 homes. While Dolet Hills Solar is the first power purchase agreement between the companies, DESRI’s Louisiana portfolio will now total nearly 700 MWac of construction and contracted clean energy projects.

“DESRI is proud to provide low-cost, clean and reliable power to Cleco and its customers from this historic solar facility,” said Hy Martin, DESRI chief development officer. “In addition to our partners at Cleco, the project will bring local economic benefits to DeSoto Parish and surrounding communities for years to come. In addition, the project will replace lignite-fired electricity with renewable energy on reclaimed mining land.”

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