California Stepping up to Buy More Solar Power

Great green news out of CA, California’s two biggest investor-owned utilities have been given the green light to buy 616 megawatts of renewable energy.

Southern California Edison will buy 20 years worth of output from two giant solar photovoltaic plants being developed by First Solar, Inc.

Pacific Gas and Electric will take power from a large solar PV facility being developed by Alpine Suntower LLC, a subsidiary of NRG Energy, again for a 20 year period.

The companies won approval from the California Public Utilities Commission, which said the contracts would help the state meet its renewable energy goals.

The two First Solar power plants set to supply power to SCE are the Desert Sunlight and Desert Stateline projects, located in Desert Center and San Bernardino, California.

These plants, respectively, will provide 250MW and 300MW of generating capacity from 2015. The Desert Sunlight project is being fast-tracked by the Bureau of Land Management regarding its permitting, and is in line for federal stimulus funding.