Constellation and Bloom Energy Develop Fuel Cell Projects
Constellation and Bloom Energy are developing 40 megawatts of fuel cell projects for commercial and public sector customers in California, Connecticut, New Jersey and New York. Under the agreement, Constellation will provide equity financing and own a majority equity interest in Bloom Energy Servers at more than 170 sites for customers, including AT&T, the City of Hartford, Conn., and Walmart among others. The projects require no upfront capital from customers, who will purchase the power generated by the fuel cells under 15-year power purchase agreements.
“Bloom Energy and Constellation are ideally suited to work together to deliver reliable and cost-effective energy solutions to customers,” said Bill Thayer, executive vice president of sales at Bloom Energy. “This new portfolio continues to extend the benefit of Bloom’s technology to a wider range of customers.”
Walmart currently has more than 40 installations with Bloom Energy. Through this partnership with Constellation, they are looking forward to expanding Bloom deployments into new territories, said David Ozment, senior director of energy at Walmart.
Hartford Mayor Pedro E. Segarra said the City of Hartford benefits from this partnership by creating Connecticut’s first public-private microgrid. It will ensure that essential services in the Parkville neighborhood, including an elementary school, senior center, library branch, gas station and supermarket, remain operational during power outages. Utilizing fuel cells also provides power in a cost effective manner while increasing Hartford’s use of clean energy sources.
The portfolio of customer projects builds on Exelon’s 2014 equity investment in 21 megawatts of Bloom Energy Servers and supports the growth of Constellation’s distributed energy business, which has more than 300 megawatts of assets in operation or under development.
“This next step in our alliance with Bloom Energy enables customers to achieve their business objectives around energy supply,” said Gary Fromer, senior vice president of distributed energy at Constellation. “As a competitive energy supplier and a strong advocate of customer choice and innovation, Constellation aims to provide flexibility and support for our customers who require distributed generation and other dedicated energy technologies as part of their overall energy strategy.”
Through Constellation, customers of these projects also have the option to lock in competitive fixed rates for natural gas and electricity supply, and to implement energy conservation measures and other distributed energy options such as solar.
Constellation and Bloom Energy plan to complete the installations in phases by the end of 2016. When completed, the fuel cells will produce enough electricity to power the equivalent of more than 32,000 homes each year.