8minutenergy Takes Bulk of Southern California Edison’s PPAs

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Southern California Edison (SCE) has been bulking up its renewable energy portfolio recently, with a key aspect of this being solar energy. The utility is entering into power purchase agreements with multiple vendors for a total of over 1.3 GW of solar capacity. 8minutenergy Renewables has entered into 20-year power purchase agreements (PPA) for over a third of the 1.3GW, and in total will provide over 457 MW of capacity.

8minutenergy Renewables has been doing big business recently, having just closed on $30 million in financing for their Kern County project. Their Borden Solar Farm, now under contract with SCE, is located in Madera County, and will have a capacity of 51 MW when complete. The Borden project will be located on 450 acres of low-productivity farmland, which is becoming quite common these days. The system will be comprised of single-axis mounted PV modules, on a tracking system that follows the sun to maximize energy production.

“We are pleased that our Borden Solar Farm has been awarded a PPA, and excited that we now have more than 1,000 MW under contract,” said Martin Hermann, chief executive officer of 8minutenergy Renewables. “We take pride in the fact that the Borden Solar Farm will generate approximately 200 jobs for the people of Madera County during construction, and look forward to building this solar plant.”

The additional 406 MW of capacity will come from two projects located in Imperial County, California. They are the Mount Signal Solar Farm II (154 MW) and Mount Signal Solar Farm V (252 MW), and will also be located on low-productivity farmland.

The projects are being jointly developed with Silver Ridge Power, which has the exclusive rights to acquire the two projects. Solar Ridge Power is a global solar power company, and is owned 50% by SunEdison, Inc. and 50% by Riverstone Holdings, LLC. Silver Ridge and 8minutenergy have also previously co-developed the 200 MW Mount Signal 1 project, which came online earlier this year.

“Silver Ridge Power is very pleased to have achieved this significant milestone in partnership with 8minutenergy, advancing the development of the joint portfolio of solar projects in Imperial County, California,” said Stephen Westwell, President of Silver Ridge Power.

“We are very proud that we have now signed 950 MWs of PPAs, which underline our position as the nation’s leading independent solar developer, as well as the fact that the Mount Signal Solar Farm II and Mount Signal Solar Farm V projects will create more than 1,500 jobs for the people of Imperial County during construction,” said Hermann.

These three projects have also been praised by environmental groups such as the Sierra Club and the Defenders of Wildlife, because of their special attention to local wildlife and habitat.