Special to the Enterprise
Clinch County’s sun has attracted a new industry.
Hannah Solar of Atlanta has started construction on a solar panel field in Homerville. The company purchased 5.75 acres of land from the Clinch County Development Authority behind Bway’s Litho facility and has already began on the $2 million project.
“What we’re looking at is not a typical industrial development,” said CCDA Chairman Andy Stone. “They purchased property from the development authority outright at market price. Usually, companies want some type of lease with tax abatement. From my understanding, there will be no one permanently at the facility, but the construction phase will provide some economic impact on the community.”
Hannah Solar has a contract to provide Georgia Power with solar energy. The state Public Service Commission recently increased the amount of solar energy Georgia Power can produce under the Georgia Power Advanced Solar Initiative.
“We’re doing a lot of work in that part of the state. We spoke to your development authority, and they were receptive and fantastic to work with,” said Greg Kelly, Hannah Solar’s vice-president of sales and marketing. “If you look at the weather patterns and radiation from the sun, the area from Homerville all the way to Bainbridge is very good for what we do.”
What the solar panels will do is produce energy from the sun, which will then go into the Georgia Power grid. Georgia Power has a sub-station nearby on Woodlake Drive.
In addition to the Homerville project, which is estimated to be complete in September, Hannah Solar is also in the process of similar solar arrays in Cecil, Valdosta, Nashville, and Vidalia, according to Kelly.
Kelly said he and Hannah Solar CEO Pete Marte are scheduled to be in Homerville this week to check on progress of the project, and speak to local industries about solar energy.