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Taking Initiative in the Solar Energy Landscape
Today’s energy landscape is changing, and JEA is leading the way. We’ve been a pioneer in bringing solar energy to Jacksonville since the 1990s. JEA is embarking on a major expansion that will increase our current solar energy offerings by 350 percent. Through the creation of five new local solar farms, JEA will soon provide up to 300 MW of solar power – making Jacksonville one of the leading solar cities in the nation.
2019: JEA added its first utility-scale battery system to the grid in 2019 at the Imeson Solar Facility. The battery energy storage system allows JEA to store power to use when the sun isn't shining.
2017: JEA expanded universal solar by contracting with eight new solar installations, increasing installed solar by 350 percent, and launched the JEA SolarSmart program that allows customers to choose to have up to 100 percent of their power come from solar. JEA was also recognized by T&D World for leadership in integrating intermittent renewable energy resources without compromising power quality and reliability.
2009: JEA began a Net Metering initiative, providing an incentive for private solar development to help the technology mature. JEA also established itself as a leader in universal solar energy by developing a 12 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) farm, the largest PV solar installation in Florida at the time.
2004: JEA Board approved a Clean Power Program Action Plan that requires JEA to achieve 7.5 percent clean power capacity by 2015 – a goal JEA exceeded.
1999: JEA pioneered distributed solar energy by installing solar panels on more than 25 locations across Jacksonville, including 22 public schools, COJ Fire Rescue, JAX Chamber of Commerce, the Jacksonville Zoo and Jacksonville International Airport.
The Changing Energy Landscape
New technologies and the growing availability of shale gas have transformed the energy market, driving the price for renewable energy below the cost of large-scale fossil fuels. At the same time, solar power has become increasingly popular with consumers, both residential and commercial. Since 2010, the solar industry has seen average growth of 68 percent, while the cost to install solar systems has plummeted 70 percent. JEA is implementing new programs to help customers take advantage of these technologies.
Jacksonville Solar is a 15 MW DC solar photovoltaic (PV) facility located in west Jacksonville near Baldwin. It began generating energy in 2010. The facility is owned by PSEG Solar Source LLC and consists of approximately 200,000 photovoltaic panels on a 100 acre site. Juwi Solar, Inc., a Colorado-based developer and turn-key installer of solar power plants, provided the engineering, procurement and construction services. The solar project avoids approximately 22,430 tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually while generating about 22,430 megawatt-hours of electricity a year, an amount equal to about what 1,450 households consume. The ground-mounted, fixed photovoltaic system uses 100 percent renewable energy (sunlight) and JEA receives all electricity and renewable energy credits generated by Jacksonville Solar for a 30-year term. JEA makes all of the environmental attributes (Renewable Energy Certificates or RECs) from this facility available to sell in order to lower rates for our customers. This large project establishes JEA as a leader in solar electricity generation and offers an educational opportunity for Jacksonville residents to learn about solar energy.
Northwest Jacksonville Solar Partners LLC
The Northwest Jacksonville Solar Partners LLC facility, previously referred to as Montgomery Solar, commissioned in May of 2017 and is near the Jacksonville International Airport on the City’s northside. This 7 MW site produced over 13,000 MWh in its first year. AlsoEnergy™ is providing a way to view live generation data.
Old Plank Road Solar Facility
The Old Plank Road Solar facility is a 3 MW site on the City’s westside. It was commissioned in October 2017 and produced over 5,000 MWh of electricity in its first year. Live onsite generation can be viewed with eGauge Systems software.
Starratt Road Solar Facility
Commissioned in December 2017, the Starratt Road Solar facility is a 5 MW site located on the City’s northside. This site generated approximately 9,000 MWh in its first year of operation.
Simmons Road Solar Facility
The 2 MW Simmons Road Solar facility commissioned in January of 2018 and is located on the City’s northside. The site generated about 3,500 MWh of electricity in the first year.
Blair Road Solar Facility
The 4 MW Blair Road Solar facility is located on the City's westside. The site was commissioned in January 2018 and generated over 6,700 MWh in its first year.
Old Kings Road Solar Facility
The 1 MW Old Kings Road Solar facility commissioned in October 2018. This northside facility generated approximately 1,900 MWh in its first year.
Imeson (SunPort) Solar Facility
The Imeson Solar facility, also known as SunPort, commissioned December 2019 and is located on the City’s northside. The site is comprised of a 5 MW solar PV array paired with a 2 MW, 4 MWh battery energy storage system (BESS) that levels the solar generation. This BESS is the first utility scale battery system on the JEA grid. The facility is expected to generate approximately 15,000 MWh in its first year of operation.