PG&E Signs 800 MW Agreements With OptiSolar, SunPower


Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) has entered into two utility-scale photovoltaic solar power contracts for a total of 800 MW of renewable energy. This commitment to photovoltaic technology will deliver cumulatively 1.65 billion Kwh of renewable energy annually. This amount would be equivalent to the amount of energy needed to serve approximately 239,000 residential homes each year, PG&E says.

PG&E entered into an agreement with Topaz Solar Farms LLC, a subsidiary of OptiSolar Inc., for 550 MW of thin-film PV solar power. The utility also signed a contract with High Plains Ranch II LLC, a subsidiary of SunPower Corp., for 250 MW of high-efficiency PV solar power.

The 550 MW Topaz Solar Farm project would utilize relatively low-cost, thin-film PV panels designed and manufactured by OptiSolar in Hayward, Calif., and Sacramento, Calif. Located in San Luis Obispo County, Calif., the project would deliver approximately 1,100,000 MWh of renewable electricity annually. The project is expected to begin power delivery in 2011 and be fully operational by 2013.

SunPower's planned 250 MW solar ranch would be located in San Luis Obispo County's California Valley and will deliver an average of 550,000 MWh of clean electricity annually. The project is expected to begin power delivery in 2010 and be fully operational in 2012. The ranch would employ SunPower's proprietary crystalline PV solar cells, which generate up to 50% more power than conventional crystalline cells.

SOURCE: Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

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