USA – WestRock, a leading advocate in sustainable fiber-based paper and packaging solutions, has recently forged two virtual power purchase agreements (VPPAs) with ENGIE North America.
This collaboration marks WestRock’s dedication to mitigating greenhouse gas emissions by infusing renewable energy into the US energy grid.
The VPPAs specifically support two solar initiatives within ENGIE’s purview – Bernard Creek in Wharton County, Texas, and Chillingham Solar in Bell County, Texas.
These projects are anticipated to collectively contribute 282 megawatts (MW) to the US energy grid, scheduled to commence operations in 2024.
This strategic partnership aligns with WestRock’s commitment to pursue a science-based target (SBT), aiming for a substantial 27.5% reduction in Scope 1, 2, and 3 greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
Schneider Electric, offering advisory services, played a pivotal role in facilitating these agreements between WestRock and ENGIE.
WestRock is set to secure 207 MW from Bernard Creek, a 230 MW solar endeavor situated southwest of Houston, projected to yield an annual output of approximately 500,000 MWh.
Envisioned for completion in the first half of 2024, this project is expected to generate over US$45 million in revenue for Wharton County over its lifespan, along with the creation of more than 250 jobs during construction.
Moreover, WestRock will contract 75 MW from ENGIE’s 350 MW Chillingham Solar project. Beyond contributing to the US energy grid, Chillingham Solar is poised to generate an estimated US$70 million in revenue over its lifespan, with $53 million directly benefitting local school districts. WestRock’s share of Chillingham is estimated to reach around 200,000 MWh per year.
ENGIE’s pioneering advancements in renewables have positioned the company as a top developer in selling corporate energy power purchase agreements (PPAs).
BloombergNEF’s latest Market Outlook report acknowledges ENGIE’s consistent top-three ranking since 2019. With a corporate PPA portfolio in the US surpassing 7 GW, ENGIE solidifies its commitment to propelling the energy transition.
John Powers, vice-president of global renewable energy and carbon advisory at Schneider Electric, highlighted that partnerships like WestRock and ENGIE’s not only contribute to clean energy integration into the grid but also foster economic development, create job opportunities, and underscore a commitment to sustainable solutions within local communities.