Enel Green Power North America, Inc. (EGPNA), the U.S. renewable energy company of the Enel Group, has signed a tax equity agreement worth approximately US$365 million with Bank of America Merrill Lynch and J.P. Morgan for the 300 MW Rock Creek wind farm located in Missouri.
Under the agreement, which is common for the development of renewable energy projects in the United States, the investors will contribute the above amount to the wind farm’s owner Rock Creek Holdings1 in exchange for 100% of “Class B” equity interests in the project. This interest will allow the two investors to obtain, under certain conditions set by U.S. tax laws, a percentage of the fiscal benefits of the Rock Creek wind project. In turn, EGPNA, through Rock Creek Holdings will retain 100% ownership of the “Class A” interests and therefore management control of the project.
The agreement secures the funding commitment by the two investors, and the closing of the funding is expected to occur upon completion of construction and achievement of commercial operation of the farm. The tax equity partnership will be supported by a parent company guarantee from Enel S.p.A.
The Rock Creek wind farm, whose construction started in October 2016, is expected to begin operations by the end of 2017 and is EGPNA’s first wind project in the state of Missouri. The investment in Rock Creek amounts to, approximately, US$500 million, which is part of the investment outlined in Enel’s current strategic plan.
Once fully operational, Rock Creek will be able to generate around 1,250 GWh per year, providing enough energy to meet the annual consumption needs of more than 100,000 average U.S. households, while avoiding the emissions of around 900,000 tonnes of CO2 each year.