Dominion Energy D announced that it has added 81 megawatt (MW) of solar power to the South Carolina’s energy grid. Its two projects — the 71.4 MW Solvay Solar Energy-Jasper County, S.C., facility that came online on Dec 21, 2017 and the 10 MW Ridgeland Solar project that came online on May 28, 2017 — have started production.
The company has entered into a long-term power purchase agreement with SCE&G Solvay to sell the entire production from these solar facilities.
Dominion has been focusing on producing more electricity from clean sources. Also, it has been investing regularly to expand its renewable generation assets. At present, Dominion Energy’s renewable generation fleet either under development or in operation, exceeds more than 1,900 MW of clean energy in nine states throughout the United States.
Dominion renewable generation portfolio is pre-dominantly solar power based. At present the company has in excess of 1,600 MW of solar generation, in service or under development in nine U.S. states.
Majority of the solar facility of Dominion is located in the east coast states of Virginia and North Carolina. Dominion aims to achieve renewable energy goal of 15% and renewable power goal of 12.5% in Virginia and Carolina, respectively.
The Bigger Picture
Even with the repeal of the Clean Power Plan, the renewable energy projects are making its presence felt in the total power generation portfolio. Per a report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, solar capacity is likely to increase to 30 gigawatts (GW) in 2018 from 2016 end level of 22 GW.
It is quite evident that the utility operators are investing to generate more energy from renewable assets. NextEra Energy NEE aims to add nearly 10,100-16,500 MW of new renewable projects (including wind repowering) online over the 2017–2020 time frame.
Duke Energy Corporation DUK is also investing regularly to increase production from its renewable assets and aims to lower its emission level by 40% in 2030 from 2005 levels.
Shares of Dominion have outperformed the industry in the last six months. The stock has gained 6.5% compared with the industry’s rise of 2.5%
The company is gaining from expansion of its electric transmission, natural gas facilities and midstream assets.
Zacks Rank & A Stock to Consider
Dominion carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked stock in the same space is DTE Energy Company DTE carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
DTE Energy reported an average positive earnings surprise of 3.81% in last four quarters. Its 2017 and 2018 Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings has moved up 0.4% to $5.54 and 0.9% to $5.73, respectively, in the last 90 days.
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