NEWS RELEASE

RIOSOL TRANSMISSION PROJECT: ECONOMIC IMPACT

$2.4 Billion RioSol Transmission Project to Generate 
$1.17 Billion in Economic Benefit to New Mexico and Arizona

Work on the 557 Mile HVAC Line will create more than 2,600 jobs and generate $667 million in New Mexico and $506 million in Arizona

FOR RELEASE:

Media Contact: Tom Garrity, 505-898-8689, riosol@garritypr.com

Southwestern Power Group (SWPG), with offices in Albuquerque and Phoenix, is developing the RioSol Transmission Line, a High Voltage Alternating Current (HVAC) transmission line spanning 557 miles through New Mexico and Arizona. RioSol will create 2,626 jobs during its construction and utilization, according to an independent report from Energy Economic & Environmental Consultants. The transmission infrastructure investment is stimulating new economic opportunities for renewable energy generation, enabling local wind and solar energy resources to be developed along its route.

SWPG is planning to construct eleven substations along the RioSol transmission line which will deliver 1,600 MW of renewable energy to communities. RioSol will generate $1.17 billion in new economic activity in Arizona and New Mexico. Construction is slated to begin in 2026 and completed in 2028. RioSol is in its late stage of development, having completed the major federal and state permits along with right of way acquisition. RioSol is the second line of the original SunZia Transmission Project, paralleling the SunZia line that is currently under construction by Pattern Energy.

The RioSol transmission line project represents a private capital investment and operational expenditures of more than $2.4 billion. Nearly $244 million in development expenditures are anticipated through 2025 before any ground is broken on the project. The financial benefits provided to New Mexico ($667 million) and Arizona ($506 million) will generate an estimated economic impact of $1 billion over the project’s construction, and more than $3 billion over the project’s lifespan.

The project is anticipated to generate 2,626 job years; 1701 of which are directly created by the construction of the transmission lines. The other 926 job years are attributed to operations and maintenance activities over a 30 year period, according to Energy Economic & Environmental Consultants. 

Throughout project construction, 2026-2028, total projected construction costs exceed $1.75 billion. Once built, operations and maintenance expenditures from 2028 create economic and fiscal impacts of nearly $12.3 million per year and total nearly $368 million by 2058.

RioSol Economic Benefits in New Mexico

The RioSol transmission project originates in east-central New Mexico. The new 1.6 gigawatts of transmission capacity in this area will allow for capital investment and facilitate development of New Mexico’s available high-quality wind and solar resources. Torrance county is the eastern terminus of RioSol which traverses 349.4 miles through Valencia, Socorro, Sierra, Luna, Grant, and Hidalgo counties, powering local New Mexico communities with New Mexico wind-rich energy, before continuing its path through Arizona. 

  • Total employment: 1,034 Job-Years
  • Annual Wages: $53.9 million
  • Local impacts: $451.4 million
  • Government Fiscal Benefits: $94.5 million

RioSol Economic Benefits in Arizona

RioSol traverses 207.5 miles and five Arizona counties including Greenlee, Graham, Cochise, Pima, and Pinal before terminating into the grid southeast of Phoenix. RioSol’s HVAC design will permit wind-rich New Mexico energy to be available to Arizona communities.  Arizona’s solar-rich energy can be distributed throughout the state or sold to communities in New Mexico.

  • Total employment: 621 Job-Years
  • Annual Wages: $37.3 million 
  • Local Impacts: $265.9 million
  • Government Fiscal Benefits: $98.5 million

For more information about RioSol and to read the full economic report as prepared by Energy Economic & Environmental Consultants, visit https://riosol.energy/community-benefits/

About RioSol

RioSol is a planned 500-kilovolt (Kv) High Voltage Alternating Current (HVAC) renewable energy transmission line that will deliver clean energy through Central New Mexico to South Central Arizona. For project details visit RioSol.Energy and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn @RioSolEnergy.

 

# # #