EVANSVILLE — CenterPoint Energy has been given approval to acquire a 300-megawatt solar power development that will be built in Posey County.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission also approved CenterPoint to purchase another 100-megawatts of power from a solar energy development planned in Warrick County, said Alyssia Oshodi, a CenterPoint spokeswomwan.

Arevon Energy Management and Tenaska are developing the 3,000-acre project in rural Marrs Township in southeast Posey County. It will be built by Arevon and owned by CenterPoint.

The Posey County Solar project has drawn opposition from residents and farmers concerned how it will affect property values, safety and quality of life. The project is slated to begin operating in 2023.

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CenterPoint will also enter into a 25-year power purchase agreement with Rustic Hills Solar, a development of Clenera LLC, an Idaho-based company. It will be a 200-megawatt project and also will begin operating in 2023, Oshodi said.

Hoosier Energy, a Bloomington rural electric co-op, also will purchase power from the Warrick County development.

Oshodi said the combined 400 megawatts of solar power will further CenterPoint's long-term plan to transition its power generation from coal to renewable energy sources. The company has committed to achieving a goal of zero net carbon emissions by 2035.

It plans to replace its coal-burning A.B. Brown power plant in Posey County with natural gas turbines has received criticism from customers for the approximately $23 a month it will add to bills.

Environmental organizations have criticized it because it will still have some carbon emissions and also for potential environmental impacts of the 23-mile pipeline that will carry the natural gas to the power plant.

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