Southern Company subsidiary acquires 200-MW California solar project

Tops 350 MW of solar ownership in the state

Aug 31, 2015, 09:00 ET from Southern Company

ATLANTA, Aug. 31, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Expanding on one of America's largest renewable portfolios, Southern Company subsidiary Southern Power today announced the acquisition of a controlling interest in the 200-megawatt (MW) Tranquillity Solar Facility in California from Recurrent Energy, a subsidiary of Canadian Solar Inc. One of North America's largest solar developers, Recurrent Energy is constructing the facility and will retain the remaining interest in the project.

"Southern Company's strategic solar expansion is helping diversify our energy mix while strengthening our industry leadership in solar," said Southern Company Chairman, President and CEO Thomas A. Fanning. "We will continue to develop the right projects and develop innovative solutions as we shape America's energy future."

The project, which represents Southern Power and Recurrent Energy's first partnership, is expected to generate enough clean solar energy to power approximately 55,000 homes when completed, helping California meet its ambitious carbon emission reduction goals.

"Southern Power's investment in the Tranquillity project is another example of solar power's move into the utility's diverse generation mix and further shows the Recurrent Energy team's ability to partner with energy industry leaders," said Canadian Solar Inc. Chairman and CEO Dr. Shawn Qu. "Through the development of utility-scale solar assets, Recurrent Energy and Canadian Solar are together ushering the way into a new era of clean, competitive, mainstream generation."  

With one of America's most robust renewable generation portfolios, Southern Power has announced, acquired or is constructing more than 1,300 MW of renewable ownership with 19 solar, wind and biomass projects, including six solar projects in California. This facility adds further diversity and reliability to the Southern Company system's generation mix of nuclear, 21st century coal, natural gas, renewables and energy efficiency.

The project is being constructed on 1,900 acres of land in Fresno County, California. Expected to create approximately 500 construction jobs, the facility will consist of more than 800,000 polycrystalline photovoltaic solar modules, mounted on tracking tables.

Construction began in July, with Signal Energy Constructors managing the engineering, procurement and construction of the facility. The project is expected to enter commercial operation in the fourth quarter of 2016.

The electricity and associated renewable energy credits generated by the facility will be sold under a 15-year power purchase agreement with Southern California Edison.

The project fits Southern Power's business strategy of growing its wholesale business through the acquisition and construction of generating assets substantially covered by long-term contracts.

About Southern Power

Southern Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company, is a leading U.S. wholesale energy provider, meeting the electricity needs of municipalities, electric cooperatives and investor-owned utilities. Southern Power and its subsidiaries own or have rights to 28 facilities in nine states, with more than 9,900 MW of generating capacity operating or under development in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas.

About Recurrent Energy

Recurrent Energy, a subsidiary of Canadian Solar Inc., is redefining what it means to be a mainstream clean energy company, with utility-scale solar plants that provide competitive clean electricity. The company has more than 4 GW of solar projects in development in North America. Additional details are available at: www.recurrentenergy.com

About Canadian Solar Inc.

Founded in 2001 in Canada, Canadian Solar is one of the world's largest and foremost solar power companies. As a leading manufacturer of solar photovoltaic modules and a provider of solar energy solutions, Canadian Solar has a geographically diversified pipeline of utility-scale power projects. In the past 14 years, Canadian Solar has successfully deployed over 10 GW of premium quality modules in over 70 countries around the world. Furthermore, Canadian Solar is one of the most bankable companies in the world, having been publically listed on NASDAQ since 2006. For additional information about the company, follow Canadian Solar on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or on the website.

About Southern Company

With more than 4.5 million customers and approximately 46,000 megawatts of generating capacity, Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is the premier energy company serving the Southeast through its subsidiaries. A leading U.S. producer of clean, safe, reliable and affordable electricity, Southern Company owns electric utilities in four states and a growing competitive generation company, as well as fiber optics and wireless communications. Southern Company brands are known for excellent customer service, high reliability and affordable prices that are below the national average. Through an industry-leading commitment to innovation, Southern Company and its subsidiaries are inventing America's energy future by developing the full portfolio of energy resources, including nuclear, 21st century coal, natural gas, renewables and energy efficiency, and creating new products and services for the benefit of customers. Southern Company has been named by the U.S. Department of Defense and G.I. Jobs magazine as a top military employer, listed by Black Enterprise magazine as one of the 40 Best Companies for Diversity and designated a 2014 Top Employer for Hispanics by Hispanic Network. The company earned the 2014 National Award of Nuclear Science and History from the National Atomic Museum Foundation for its leadership and commitment to nuclear development, and is continually ranked among the top utilities in Fortune's annual World's Most Admired Electric and Gas Utility rankings. Visit our website at www.southerncompany.com.

Cautionary Notes Regarding Forward-Looking Statements:

Canadian Solar Inc.

Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. These statements are made under the "Safe Harbor" provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by such terms as "believes," "expects," "anticipates," "intends," "estimates," the negative of these terms, or other comparable terminology. Factors that could cause actual results to differ include the risks regarding general business and economic conditions and the state of the solar industry; governmental support for the deployment of solar power; future available supplies of solar grade silicon; demand for solar products by consumers and inventory levels of such products in the supply chain; changes in demand from significant customers; changes in demand in our project markets, including Canada, the U.S., Japan and China; changes in customer order patterns; capacity utilization; level of competition; pricing pressure and declines in average selling price; delays in new product introduction; continued success in technological innovations and delivery of products with the features customers demand; utility-scale project approval process delays; utility-scale project construction delays; utility-scale project cancelation due to failure to obtain all the necessary permits; shortage in supply of materials or capacity requirements; availability of financing; exchange rate fluctuations; trade protectionism in Europe, the U.S. and India; litigation and other risks as described in the Company's SEC filings, including its annual report on Form 20-F filed on April 28, 2014. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in its forward-looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee future results, level of activity, performance, or achievements. Investors should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. All information provided in this press release is as of today's date, unless otherwise stated, and Canadian Solar undertakes no duty to update such information, except as required under applicable law.

Southern Company and Southern Power

Certain information contained in this release is forward-looking information based on current expectations and plans that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking information includes, among other things, statements concerning the construction and subsequent operation of the Tranquillity Solar Facility, job creation and the future generating capacity of Southern Power and its subsidiaries' facilities. Southern Company and Southern Power caution that there are certain factors that can cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information that has been provided. The reader is cautioned not to put undue reliance on this forward-looking information, which is not a guarantee of future performance and is subject to a number of uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside the control of Southern Company and Southern Power; accordingly, there can be no assurance that such suggested results will be realized. The following factors, in addition to those discussed in each of Southern Company's and Southern Power's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014, and subsequent securities filings, could cause actual results to differ materially from management expectations as suggested by such forward-looking information: the ability to control costs and avoid cost overruns during the development and construction of generating facilities, to construct facilities in accordance with the requirements of permits and licenses, and to satisfy any operational and environmental performance standards, including the requirements of tax credits and other incentives; and potential business strategies, including acquisitions or dispositions of assets or businesses, which cannot be assured to be completed or beneficial to Southern Company or Southern Power. Southern Company and Southern Power expressly disclaim any obligation to update any forward-looking information.

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