FERC approves shared transmission for Desert Sunlight projects

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Oct. 24 accepted an agreement under which the affiliated developers of two solar projects, Desert Sunlight 250 LLC and Desert Sunlight 300 LLC, will share common transmission facilities.

The agreement is between Desert Sunlight 250, Desert Sunlight 300 and Sunlight Holdings LLC. Desert 250 and Desert 300 are wholly-owned subsidiaries of Sunlight Holdings. Sunlight Holdings is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Desert Sunlight Investment Holdings LLC. Desert Sunlight Investment is owned by:

  • NextEra Desert Sunlight Holdings LLC (an affiliate of NextEra Energy);
  • EFS Desert Sun LLC (General Electric affiliate); and
  • Summit Solar Desert Sunlight LLC (Sumitomo Corp.).

Desert 250 and Desert 300 own and operate photovoltaic solar facilities with the capacity to produce up to 250 MW and 300 MW, respectively. Both facilities are located in Riverside County, Calif. Both  interconnect into the Red Bluff 230 kV bus, which is a 500/230 kV substation owned by Southern California Edison. Desert 250 and Desert 300 own, as co-tenants,
 certain interconnection facilities, including a 12-mile, 230 kV generation tie-line and a set of 230 kV disconnect switches. There are indications in the FERC filings that both projects are to be fully operating by early 2014.

The shared facilities agreement between Desert 250 and Desert 300 that FERC approved on Oct. 24 is intended to enable both companies to deliver power produced by their generating projects to the transmission grid.

The maximum amount of energy that could be transmitted from the Desert 250 and the Desert 300 generating facilities would be approximately 1.35 million MWh each annually. While Desert 250 could transmit around 2.19 million MWh annually and Desert 300 could transmit 2.63 million MWh annually, each is an intermittent photovoltaic facility projected to have a capacity factor of about 28%, or 1.35 million MWh annually.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.