Leeward Starts Construction on 196 MW Big Plain Solar Project in Ohio

Leeward Renewable Energy has started construction on the Big Plain Solar project, which is 196 MW. It is located near London in Ohio. Verizon Communications will receive the renewable energy generated by this project under a long-term power buy agreement.

SOLV Energy is a solar and energy storage company. SOLV Energy will be the engineering procurement and construction (EPC), contractor on the project. First Solar advanced, ultra low carbon thin-film solar modules will be used. Big Plain Solar is expected to provide approximately 400 construction jobs, with at least 80% to Ohioans, furthering LRE’s commitment to hiring local labor.

As part of LRE’s pledge to being responsible stewards of the land it develops and manages, the company will implement numerous sustainable practices at Big Plain Solar, including maintaining a soil health monitoring program and curating a 70-acre pollinator habitat.

“At Verizon, we are committed to building a greener U.S. energy grid through proven sustainable and socially responsible strategies and programs,” says James Gowen, Verizon’s chief sustainability officer and senior vice president of global supply chain. “The groundbreaking at the Big Plain solar facility is another step on our way to achieving net zero emissions in our operations by 2035.”

“The start of construction at Big Plain Solar is an integral step in the advancement of LRE’s solar portfolio and an important milestone for Ohio and the local community,” comments John Wieland, chief development officer at LRE. “This project not only brings economic development benefits to Madison County, but also environmental benefits. We are constantly looking for innovative land management practices to improve soil health and aesthetics across the LRE portfolio. Big Plain Solar will be implementing these practices. We thank Madison County and the rest of the community for their continued support and long-term partnership.”

LRE expects that the project can be commercially operated by June 2023.