Halifax Electric, North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives bring solar energy and battery storage to northeastern N.C.

Halifax Electric Membership Corporation (EMC), an Enfield based power provider to more than 11,750 homes and businesses, and North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives, the wholesale power provider to the state’s local co-ops, today jointly announce a significant milestone in energy innovation for North Carolina – the operation of a newly constructed 6.9MWdc solar energy and battery storage project interconnected at an electric substation in Enfield, N.C.

This project, named Grissom, was developed by Pine Gate Renewables. It will generate enough energy to power approximately 1,030 homes annually and is a demonstration of the electric cooperatives’ leadership in incorporating new energy resources that enhance grid resilience and reliability to consumer-members, while also working toward sustainability goals set under the co-ops’ Brighter Future vision.

The Grissom facility is interconnected to Halifax EMC’s distribution grid via its Medoc substation, and North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives is buying the power under a long-term contract. In addition to the solar energy, Grissom provides 10MWh of additional energy storage, expected to be dispatched during peak demand hours as an additional resource for these high usage times and helping to control costs.

Halifax EMC worked closely with Pine Gate Renewables to provide the interconnection. “Halifax EMC is excited to share new efforts to build a brighter future for our local communities – through innovation, sustainability, and a continued focus on reliability and meeting member needs,” said Charles Guerry, EVP of Halifax EMC.

“This pairing of solar energy with battery storage is important,” said Jimmy Wilkins, vice president of portfolio and resource optimization for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “Solar energy is most abundant during the middle of the day, but demand peaks in the late afternoon hours in the summer and early in the morning during winter. With this project, we are capturing a renewable resource when it’s most abundant, storing it and discharging it exactly when it’s needed – there’s a lot of potential here.”