Solar farm coming to George County set to generate more than just power

Pine Gate Renewal is bringing the project to George County.
Published: Feb. 23, 2023 at 9:57 PM CST
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ROCKY CREEK, Miss. (WLOX) - A second renewable energy company is coming to George County.

The Sunflower Solar Project will generate enough power for more than 15,000 homes a year.

“It’s supposed to be bringing in 300 construction workers, and that’s going to be good for the city of Lucedale sales tax, but the whole project is going to benefit both city and county greatly, so we are 100% behind it,” said Mayor Doug Lee.

Pine Gate Renewal is bringing the project to George County. According to Vice President of Product Development Sean Anderson, this is a $115 million investment.

“The goal of the project is to have solar protections sitting on a single access tracker system that slowly tracks the sun throughout the day. It will be put on the Mississippi Power transmission grid and it’s going to be distributed through the Mississippi Power service territory, especially on the southern end of Mississippi here,” Anderson said.

The project is set to create 300 jobs during development and construction.

“During construction, which can last anywhere from 10 to 12 months, we’re expecting about 300 construction jobs, and you can probably guess we’re going to utilize local contractors’ people in George County and the Rocky Creek community,” Anderson said.

Not everyone is on board with the idea of a new solar project in the Rocky Creek community. Shane Dickerson has lived in Rocky Creek his whole life. He is not sold on the project.

“The biggest thing is cutting off jobs for welders... From what I see it doesn’t work too good. Solars don’t work too good,” Dickerson said.

According to Global Energy Monitor, five solar farms have been built in Mississippi since 2017, not including the Sunflower Solar Project, which is set to begin in late 2024 to early 2025.

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