Switch and NV Energy strike deal to end battle
After more than eight months of debate, Las Vegas data center company Switch and NV Energy have reached a compromise that will keep the tech firm as a customer of the power company.
The deal, which still awaits approval from the Public Utilities Commission, will end an attempt by a large-scale electricity consumer to cut ties with the power company in order to produce and buy energy from other sources.
It mandates the utility build a 100-megawatt solar array in North Las Vegas that will generate power for Switch by the end of 2016. NV Energy will partner with First Solar to build the array. When the sun is down, Switch will be able to access the utility’s geothermal and wind resources to power its operations.
Recently, NV Energy hashed a 20-year power purchasing agreement with First Solar for a 100-megawatt plant in Clark County’s Solar Energy Zone.
The company will pay a premium to use the renewable energy and will no longer purchase power from carbon emitting sources. That premium is expected to help offset the costs of building the array, theoretically blocking increases in electricity bills for other NV Energy customers. Until its completion, Switch will be able to use credits to buy renewable electricity on the wholesale market. Both sides penned the agreement on Friday night.
“We plan on being 100 percent green immediately,” Adam Kramer, Switch’s vice president of government affairs, said.