Silicon Ranch

Nashville-based Silicon Ranch — which serves as the North American solar platform for Shell and is one of the largest independent power producers in the United States —  will build, operate and own its first solar farm in Canada.

Earlier this week, Silicon Ranch and Shell Canada announced plans to build a 58-megawatt solar farm adjacent to Shell’s Energy and Chemicals Park Scotford near Edmonton, Alberta.

“Today’s announcement represents a meaningful milestone for Silicon Ranch as we expand our operations into Canada,” Reagan Farr, Silicon Ranch co-founder and CEO, said in a release. “Shell’s commitment to purchase the power from our facility will catalyze our own significant capital investment in Strathcona County, creating hundreds of local jobs during construction and generating critical tax revenues over the life of the project.”

Construction will begin sometime next year. Upon completion, the project will provide 20 percent of the refinery’s energy needs with renewable electricity.

The solar farm is expected to begin providing electricity to Shell’s Scotford Refinery by the fourth quarter of 2023.

The renewable power generated by the solar farm along with Shell’s carbon capture measures will enable Scotford to process raw material such as bio-oils which will reduce CO2 emission from fuel production, according to Shell.

“Partnerships like this will enable Scotford to contribute to Shell’s overall plan to become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050, in step with society,” said Mark Pattenden, Shell Canada senior vice president for chemicals and products.

Silicon Ranch was co-founded by former Nashville mayor and Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen and has since raised hundreds of millions of dollars in investment capital. In October, the firm acquired Clearloop, another renewable energy company co-founded by Bredesen.

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