Huge Pender County solar farm under construction

Man installing solar panels (Photo:

PENDER COUNTY, NC (StarNews) — A rural area in northern Pender County will soon help a Danish pharmaceutical company get a bit greener.

Construction started in March on a 675-acre solar farm on a 1,000-acre tract near N.C. 11 and Willard Road, approximately halfway between Watha and Wallace.

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Energy that the farm generates will belong to international pharmaceutical giant Novo Nordisk. The farm is being built by California-based Cypress Creek Renewables and is expected to generate about 900 construction jobs, including about 150 that will be filled by local workers.

Energy from the $70-million, 105-megawatt farm — one of the largest such sites in North Carolina — will be sufficient, officials said, to offset all of Novo Nordisk’s energy use in North America. That includes all its offices, labs and manufacturing facilities, including the company’s growing manufacturing plant in Clayton.

“Beginning in early 2020, Novo Nordisk’s global production will be completely powered by renewable electricity, with a 10-year goal of achieving zero carbon emissions from operations and transportation,” according to a press release from the company.

Read more here.