I&M planning four solar plants, seeks proposals for more
Fort Wayne-based Indiana Michigan Power this week announced plans to expand its clean energy offerings with four new solar power plants. The utility says the plants, to be located across northern and east central Indiana will have the capability to generate power for a total of more than 200,000 homes in Indiana and Michigan by mid-2026. Two of the plants will be owned and operated by I&M, which plans to invest approximately $1 billion for their development.
The projects are part of I&M’s Powering the Next Tomorrow Integrated Resource Plan and goal of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2045.
I&M has filed its plans for the solar plants with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission and the Michigan Public Service Commission. While the plants will all be located in Indiana, plans must be filed with the Michigan commission because the power generated by some of the plants will serve some homes in Michigan.
“These steps are the result of exhaustive studies and a stakeholder process that included input from advocates for customers, communities, the environment and more,” I&M President and Chief Operating Officer Steve Baker said in a news release. “Importantly, they are also consistent with the energy policies of both states we serve.”
The four solar plant projects include:
|Lake Trout (Blackford County)||EDF Renewables||245||73,500|
|Mayapple/IN (Pulaski County)||Lightsource bp||224||67,200|
|Sculpin (DeKalb County)||EDF Renewables||180||54,000|
Each of the four plants will be built by private developers. However, I&M said it will invest $1 billion in the Lake Trout and Mayapple facilities, which it will own and operate.
The utility will purchase the power generated by the Sculpin and Elkhart County facilities, which will be independently owned. I&M did not specify how much is being invested in those two projects.
The four plants are expected to be placed in service between late 2025 and mid-2026.
Additionally, I&M has issued a Request for Proposals for future projects that could involve a variety of renewable energy sources, including wind, solar battery storage, and natural gas peaking, by December 2027.
The utility is specifically seeking proposals for:
- Wind: Approximately 800 MW
- Solar: Approximately 850 MW
- Battery storage: Approximately 315 MW
- Natural gas (peaking): Approximately 540 MW
- Other: I&M is also open to other proposals that could involve emerging technologies, thermal energy or other resources.
Proposed projects must be located in Indiana or Michigan, except for wind projects, which could also be located in Illinois or Ohio. I&M said it is seeking some projects that it will own and operate and others that will involve power purchase agreements.
“Our pursuit of a diversified suite of generation resources to supply the reliable energy our customers count on is part of that commitment,” said Baker. “With solar, wind, nuclear and other sources, these projects help ensure an adequate supply of energy under all weather conditions.”
Bids are due by May 26. You can find more information on the RFP by clicking here.