CHARLES CITY COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A new solar facility in Charles City boasting over 514,200 panels opened last week on wetlands at the county’s western edge.

The facility, which was built by the AES corporation, is expected to generate 175 Megawatts. That’s enough to power approximately 30,000 homes — over ten times the number currently in Charles City County.

“We’ve built strong partnerships across Virginia, allowing us to develop successful clean energy projects like Skipjack, bring benefits to local communities, and accelerate Virginia’s clean energy transition,” said Leo Moreno, AES Clean Energy President.

This preliminary map, filed with the SCC, shows the placement of solar panels around extensive wetlands in Charles City County. (Courtesy of the Virginia State Corporation Commission)

Initial plans filed with the county in 2018 called for a 300 Megawatt facility, but that scale appears to have been reduced int he intervening years.

State Senator Jennifer McClellan (D – Richmond), said the project was an example of the success of clean energy policies passed under Democratic Governor Ralph Northam.

“The new Skipjack Solar facility is a major success story that shows how the VCEA is bringing new clean energy investment to Virginia communities,” McClellan said.

Under the Virginia Clean Economy Act (VCEA), Dominion and other power utilities are incentivized to invest in clean energy development. The act also sets a goal for 100 percent renewable generation by 2045.