Southern California Ed nears decision on PPA with 160-MW Sun Streams project

Up for review at the June 9 meeting of the California Public Utilities Commission is a draft order that would approve a Southern California Edison request on a renewables portfolio standard (RPS)-eligible power purchase agreement with Sun Streams LLC.

The utility has worked out a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Sun Streams that was executed through SCE’s 2014 RPS solicitation (2014 RPS RFO). The Sun Streams facility will be located in Tonopah, Arizona, and has a capacity of approximately 160 MW. It will interconnect within the California Independent System Operator (CAISO)-controlled grid at the Hassayampa Substation 500 kV bus.

Sun Streams is a wholly-owned subsidiary of First Solar LLC, which will develop the proposed facility. Pursuant to the Sun Streams PPA, the renewable energy from the facility will be delivered to Palo Verde/Hassayampa common bus (PVWEST) within the CAISO-controlled grid. SCE is to begin purchasing the generation from Sun Streams beginning Jan. 1, 2020. The expected annual generation to be purchased from the facility is 467 Gigawatt-hours (GWh). This generation could count towards SCE’s RPS requirements in Compliance Period 2017-2020 and subsequent Compliance Periods through the end of the PPA.

Under the Sun Streams PPA, the renewable energy credits (RECs) associated with the electricity from Sun Streams will be delivered to SCE and not unbundled or transferred to another owner.

Southern California Edison said positives for the project are:

  • Developer Experience – The Sun Streams facility is being developed by First Solar, which has significant experience in developing, operating, and maintaining over 2,300 MW of solar projects.
  • Technology and Quality of Resource – The Sun Streams Project will use solar PV technology that has been proven on utility-scale generation projects.
  • Site Control and Permitting Status – The Sun Streams facility will be located in Tonopah, Arizona. First Solar has secured site control for the Sun Streams Project. It has also received major pre-construction permits required for the project.
  • Interconnection Status – The Sun Streams facility will interconnect to the Hassayampa 500 kV bus, which is owned by the Arizona Nuclear Power Project High Voltage Switchyard and operated by the Salt River Project. The Large Generation Interconnection Agreement for the Sun Streams Project is pending.
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.