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Duke Energy and China-based ENN Group will jointly develop commercial solar power projects in the United States.
Under an agreement signed October 23, ENN and Duke Energy will concentrate on two types of solar photovoltaic designs: large "utility-scale" solar farms and commercial distributed generation solar projects. Distributed generation systems produce electricity close to where the energy is used, rather than at large, central power plants.
This joint development agreement builds upon a memorandum of understanding announced September 23 at the Clinton Global Initiative's annual meeting at which time the companies pledged to work together to accelerate the development of low-carbon and clean energy technologies.
"China is investing heavily in clean energy and we can make greater progress in the U.S. by joining forces and working together," said Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers. "Duke Energy and ENN seek to not only accelerate the development of solar power in the U.S., but help achieve economies of scale and drive down the cost of renewable energy."
"ENN and Duke Energy have very complementary strengths," said ENN chairman Wang Yusuo. "We are both dedicated to the development and use of low-carbon, clean energy sources to combat the climate change crisis facing all humanity."
Duke Energy Generation Services (DEGS), a commercial business unit of Duke Energy, will team with ENN to develop, own and operate the solar projects.
The joint development agreement will expand DEGS' existing investments in renewable energy – including wind and biopower – and commercial transmission. DEGS owns and operates more than 630 megawatts (MW) of wind power projects in the U.S. and plans to add another 350 MW by the end of 2010. In the biopower market, DEGS is developing wood-waste-to-electricity power plants in the U.S. through ADAGE, the company it formed in 2008 with French-based AREVA.
Keith Trent, president and group executive of Duke Energy's Commercial Businesses, and Wouter van Kempen, president of DEGS, joined ENN chairman Wang Yusuo and vice chairman and chief scientist Gan Zhongxue in Langfang, China, for the signing of the agreement.
ENN is committed to clean energy for China and the world. Since its founding 20 years ago, ENN has grown into an integrated group of companies that delivers clean energy to tens of millions of customers and provides overall clean energy solutions to city governments and heavy industry. ENN has more than 100 subsidiaries in over 80 cities across China and around the world, and employs more than 24,000 people. ENN Solar Energy is an international company that produces world-leading silicon thin film solar modules. It has also created an innovative system of integrated solar power stations.
About Duke Energy Generation Services
Duke Energy Generation Services (DEGS), part of Duke Energy's Commercial Businesses, is a leader in developing innovative renewable energy solutions, including wind, solar and biopower projects. DEGS builds, owns and operates electric generation for large energy consumers, municipalities, utilities and industrial facilities. DEGS is also working to build commercial transmission capacity to help the U.S. meet its energy needs of the future. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company.