News Release

Dec. 15, 2015
PNM Holds Dedication Ceremony for Rio Communities Solar Energy Center

40,250 solar panels provide enough energy to power about 4,025 average homes


Rio Communities, N.M.: Today, PNM and local public officials formally held a dedication ceremony for the PNM Rio Communities Solar Energy Center, which is going online at the end of this year. The center is built on approximately 103 acres of land located in Rio Communities. PNM invested approximately $20 million on the new 10 megawatt solar energy center that has approximately 40,250 solar panels, providing the equivalent energy used by about 4,025 average residential customers.

"PNM is delivering enough renewable energy to power 150,000 homes, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by the equivalent of taking more than 200,000 cars off the road," said Ron Darnell, Senior Vice President of Public Policy, PNM. "PNM is proud of and greatly values our relationship with Rio Communities."

S-Energy solar panels were chosen through a competitive bid process. Construction of the site created about 240 local temporary jobs. The facility will generate about $189,000 in new tax revenue for Valencia County.

The solar center features solar photovoltaic panels mounted on single-axis tracking devices that follow the sun for increased energy output. The panels are about ten feet high at their maximum angle and utilize thin film technology. Solar panels create no air emissions or waste products and do not use water to produce electricity. The panels can also be recycled at the end of their useful life.

PNM has invested $270 million on solar power in New Mexico and currently has more than one million solar panels at 15 utility scale solar centers statewide providing clean energy for our state. Four of the 15 solar centers are located in Valencia County.

With headquarters in Albuquerque, PNM is the largest electricity provider in New Mexico, serving more than 500,000 customers in dozens of communities across the state. PNM is a subsidiary of PNM Resources, an energy holding company also headquartered in Albuquerque. For more information, visit