Coronal Energy Commissions 20 MW Essex Solar Center

Ribbon cutting celebrates landmark project in Virginia, preserves legacy of historic school

Pasadena, Calif. – January 24, 2018 – Today Coronal Energy, a leading independent power producer focused on utility-scale solar and storage projects, celebrated the commissioning of the Essex Solar Center, a 20 WMac project in Dunnsville, Virginia. The 174-acre project is one of the largest in the state, delivering tax revenue and powering approximately 5,000 homes annually with clean, renewable energy. Coronal Energy owns and operates the facility and will sell power to Dominion Energy under a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA).  

Joined by public officials, project partners and special guests, Kyle West, Vice President of Development for Coronal Energy, stated that the project epitomized the best aspects of solar energy. “For decades to come, the Essex Solar Center will produce income for our landowner partners, deliver low cost, fixed price power to the utility and the local community, and reduce carbon emissions from fossil fuels. Coronal provided 100% financing for the facility under the 20-year PPA, resulting in no upfront cost to the community, further demonstrating our commitment to Essex County residents, the project and its stakeholders.”

In attendance at the event were representatives from the Southside Rappahannock Baptist Association (SRBA), one of the project’s landowner clients and an organization tied to a unique history on the site. In 1902, the SRBA sponsored the establishment of the Rappahannock Industrial Academy (RIA), a private high school for African American youth living in Essex, Middlesex, and King and Queen Counties. The school remained open until 1948, and since then the SRBA has sought to preserve the site and its legacy. “We’re celebrating today with one eye on our future and one on our past,” said James Hill, President of the RIA Task Force. “Maintaining ownership and stewardship over this land and its history, while generating income for our work and serving as home to a source of clean, affordable energy for years to come, only adds to the positive legacy of this site.”

The remaining leased acreage is owned by a private landowner, Haile Properties, LLC.

McCarthy Building Companies renewable energy team engineered and constructed the site which was completed in late December. “This project represents several firsts for McCarthy, being our first and largest solar plant constructed with Coronal Energy and our first that will serve Dominion Energy,” said Matt McMullan, project director for McCarthy Building Companies renewable energy team. “Working with the Dunnsville community was very rewarding as well. Not only were we able to recruit and train more than 80 local workers for the Essex Solar Center, the county provided exceptional support throughout the project, which contributes to the success we all feel as the facility is commissioned.”

“Essex County, Virginia is now home to one of the largest renewable energy facilities in the state and this incredible accomplishment reflects the vision of our partners, our engaged community and our local leaders who saw it through,” said Bill Croxton, Chairman Essex County Development Authority.


Val Newcomb, Vice President Marketing & Communications, Coronal Energy

About Coronal Energy

Coronal Energy, powered by Panasonic, is a leading independent power producer providing turnkey solar energy solutions tailored for diverse enterprise customers across North America, including utilities, corporations, and the public sector. It unites the financial strength of a Fortune Global 500 company (#110) and Panasonic’s award-winning history of solar innovation and sustainability leadership with the project development, finance, engineering, construction, and asset management experience of Coronal Energy. The result is smarter solar that translates to smarter business for customers. The collective experience of Coronal Energy, powered by Panasonic, includes projects in 40 states totaling 2.3 GW, with more than 3.4 GW of greenfield and brownfield projects under construction/contract or in development. For more, please visit and follow us @CoronalEnergy on Twitter.

About McCarthy Building Companies

McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. is the oldest privately held national construction company in the country – with more than 150 years spent collaborating with partners to solve complex building challenges on behalf of its clients. With an unrelenting focus on safety and a comprehensive quality program that span all phases of every project, McCarthy utilizes industry-leading design phase and construction techniques combined with value-add technology to maximize outcomes. Repeatedly honored as a Best Place to Work and Healthiest Employer, McCarthy is ranked the 16th largest domestic general contractor (Engineering News-Record, May 2016). With approximately 1,700 salaried employees and offices in St. Louis, Atlanta; Collinsville, Ill.; Portage, Ind.; Kansas City, Kan.; Phoenix; Las Vegas; Denver; Dallas, Houston; Albuquerque; and San Diego, Newport Beach, San Francisco, San Jose and Sacramento, Calif. McCarthy is 100 percent employee owned. More information is available at or on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Google+.

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