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Appalachian oil driller now looks to renewable energy

The venture partners plan to work across some 1.5 million acres of mainly contiguous, rights-owned land in three states.

A long-time oil drilling firm in the Appalachian basin is teaming up with a renewable energy developer to build and operate what they said could be more than 3 GW of renewable energy assets across Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.

Chrysalis Energy is a joint venture between Toronto-based OYA Renewables and Ohio-based Oil Well Shares. The two plan to develop and build community and utility-scale solar, wind and energy storage projects across the PJM region. 

The venture partners plan to work across some 1.5 million acres of mainly contiguous, rights-owned land in the three states. The initial development phase is set to be completed by 2030 and represent an investment of around $3 billion. 

Manish Nayar, chairman and founder of OYA Renewables called the size of the land involved “remarkable” and likely the “single largest private land inventory” in PJM. The partners also pointed to the proximity to the Great Lakes, which they said would allow them to explore green hydrogen opportunities. 

Within the scope of the joint venture, OYA and OWS plan to develop, construct, jointly own and operate renewable energy assets across OWS’s current land inventory. 

Warren, Ohio-based OWS has drilled, completed and produced what it said are thousands of unconventional and conventional wells in multiple basins across the U.S. and internationally over the past 30 years. In Ohio, it has drilled several hundred wells with a 99% success rate. The company has had a local presence in the Appalachian region for more than 100 years.

Founded in 2009, OYA has developed more than 1,440 MW of capacity and has a pipeline of 9 GW of distributed and utility-scale solar projects across North America.

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