Southern Co. CEO David Ratcliffe and environmentalist Ted Turner have announced a strategic alliance to pursue development of renewable energy projects in the United States.

"This alliance unites our common goal to explore and develop new renewable energy projects," said CEO David Ratcliffe. "We have said for some time that renewable energy should play an increasing role in this country's energy mix and that Southern Co. would seek opportunities to expand our renewable portfolio where it makes sense. This is evidence of that commitment."

"I've always been passionate about developing renewable energy, and I'm excited to join forces with Southern Company to explore our renewable energy potential," said Ted Turner, owner of Turner Renewable Energy. "Southern Company's experience in power project development, construction and operations, and customer relations help make this a strong alliance, and I look forward to working together."

Initially, Southern Company and Turner will focus on developing and investing in large scale solar photovoltaic projects in the U.S. Southwest where solar resources are currently most efficient and in demand, with the goal of further commercializing the technology and making it more cost competitive.

Southern Company and Turner also may consider developing other renewable technologies.

Turner is the largest individual landowner in North America with more than two million acres. The alliance will explore renewable projects both on Turner land as well as other suitable sites.