First Solar signs with Southern California Edison for 500 MW from new projects

First Solar Inc. (NASDAQ: FSLR) and Southern California Edison (SCE) have signed Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) for the off-take of electricity generated by four solar projects totaling 500 MW (ac) of capacity.

The deals establish SCE as the largest single off-taker of energy from First Solar projects in the world, said First Solar in a Jan. 19 statement. The PPAs are for power generated by four projects in California, Nevada and Arizona, all currently in development by First Solar with anticipated commissioning by the end of 2019.

  • The 150-MW (ac) North Rosamond Solar Project, located in Rosamond, Calif., will occupy approximately 1,175 acres of private land, and will produce approximately 488,000 MWh/year.
  • The 100-MW (ac) Willow Springs Solar Project, located near the North Rosamond Solar Project in Rosamond, Calif., will occupy approximately 1,450 acres of private land, and will produce approximately 330,000 MHh/year.
  • The 100-MW (ac) Sunshine Valley Solar Project will be located in Amargosa, Nevada, less than four miles from the California border, on privately-owned land. It will produce approximately 302,000 MWh/year.
  • The 150-MW (ac) Sun Streams Solar Project will be located on about 1,500 acres of land in Tonopah, Ariz., and will produce approximately 464,000 MWh/year.

With these agreements, SCE has 2.2 GW of solar capacity under contract from projects developed and/or built by First Solar. SCE’s first PPA with a project developed by First Solar was for the 21-MW (ac) Blythe Solar Project in 2009. The utility also has a long-term agreement for 250 MW (ac) of capacity of the 550-MW (ac) Desert Sunlight Solar Project in Desert Center, Calif., which was commissioned in 2014. SCE has additional contracts in place for other projects currently in construction, including the Desert Stateline project in California and the Silver State South project in Nevada.

“This is an exciting milestone to reach in a valued long-term relationship,” said Brian Kunz, First Solar’s Vice President of Project Development–US West. “As an early off-taker, SCE was visionary in their inclusion of utility-scale solar in their energy mix. Their commitment to providing rate-payers with clean, affordable renewable energy continues with this set of agreements.”

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.