Smart Energy Capital, Belectric Inc. and Obsidian Finance have passed the 50% completion milestone for construction of the 5.7 MW Outback Solar photovoltaic project in Oregon.
According to the companies, this is the largest solar power plant in the Northwest and the first to utilize the Bonneville Power Administration's transmission system. The project is made possible by a $5 million incentive from the Energy Trust of Oregon, along with tax credits from the Oregon Department of Energy.
Outback is located nine miles east of Christmas Valley, Ore., in a high desert area that sees sunny days most of the year. The single-axis tracking ground-mount solar array will utilize approximately 20,000 polycrystalline modules and is expected to produce approximately 10 million kWh of electricity annually when fully operational next month.
Portland General Electric will purchase all of the output from the PV system under the terms of a 25-year power purchase agreement.
The project is relying heavily on union labor from Portland-based electrical contractor Christenson Electric, the companies add. Smart Energy Capital arranged financing and secured the transmission rights, power purchase agreement, incentive agreements, and the engineering and construction contract. Belectric, which is serving as the engineering, procurement and construction contractor, is building Outback as a self-financed turnkey power plant with fully automated remote control operational capabilities.