American multinational food manufacturer Kellogg Company has signed a virtual power purchase agreement (VPPA) with Italian multinational company Enel to power its Texas operations with renewables.
As part of the deal, Kellogg’s will be provided with clean energy generated from Enel’s first large-scale wind+storage hybrid project.
The 100MW VPPA encompasses Enel selling to Kellogg’s a 360GWh portion of the electricity delivered to the grid annually from the Azure Sky wind project.
This is 50% of the volume of energy to be generated by the project per annum.
Enel has started the construction of the 350MW wind energy and 137MW storage Azure Sky Wind project in Throckmorton County, Texas. The farm will have 79 wind turbines and the expected annual electricity generated by the Azure Sky project is equivalent to avoiding the emissions of over 842,000 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere each year.
Renewable energy was criticised recently in Texas, after they failed to ensure grid reliability during an extreme weather event, and the state was left in darkness and people without heating.
However, pairing renewables with energy storage is expected to improve the resilience of grid networks especially during harsh weather conditions like the one experienced in Texas.
In a webinar hosted by Smart Energy International on energy storage applications, Suleman Khan the CEO of technology firm Swell Energy said: “10 years from now, what happened in Texas will not happen again,” if the state expands its energy storage rollout for grid resilience.
The project will be Enel’s third hybrid project in the US that integrates a renewable energy plant with utility-scale battery storage.
The project will help Kellogg’s to achieve over 50% renewable energy goal and reach 50% of its global Better Days goal to reduce its Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 65%.
Kellogg’s renewable electricity purchase is the equivalent amount of electricity it takes power more than 43,000 homes each year in North Americaà‚ and is estimated to avoid over 250,000 metric tons of CO2à‚ emissions annually, equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by 330,000 acres of US forest each year.
Salvatore Bernabei, CEO of Enel Green Power and head of Enel’s Global Power Generation business line, said: “As our first large-scale project to pair wind and storage, and our largest hybrid plant globally, Azure demonstrates Enel’s continued commitment to leading the energy transition towards a 100% renewable-powered electric grid.
“This transition is supported and accelerated by commercial customers, like Kellogg Company, who are placing sustainability at the core of their business.”
Amy Senter, Kellogg Company chief sustainability officer, adds: “Kellogg has been working to reduce its carbon footprint across our value chain for more than a decade.
“This latest VPPA further demonstrates to investors, stakeholders and our consumers that we are taking swift action to address climate change.”