SunEdison, a leading worldwide solar energy services provider and a subsidiary of MEMC Electronic Materials, announced a new 25 year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) to deliver 20 MW to Riverside Public Utilities (RPU), the municipal electric utility of the City of Riverside, Calif.
SunEdison will construct the 20-MW North Lake I Solar plant on previously disturbed land owned by the Metropolitan Water District near the Diamond Valley Lake reservoir in western Riverside County. The project is expected to deliver renewable energy and reduce the need for costly transmission upgrades due to its proximity to load centers, including the RPU service territory.
“SunEdison’s industry expertise and proven track-record give us great confidence that the project will be delivered on-time to help meet our renewable energy targets,” said David H. Wright, RPU General Manager. “Our partnership with SunEdison will enable us to deliver clean energy to our citizens at cost-effective rates while also enhancing reliability with peak-producing power. Riverside is an environmental leader among municipal utilities, and this contract builds upon our environmental stewardship.”
Riverside is among the first of California’s municipal utilities to enter into a utility-scale solar contract of this size. Under Senate Bill X 1-2, California extended its Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) program goal to 33 percent and included publicly-owned utilities (POUs) such as Riverside.
“We are very excited to be working with the City of Riverside on this project and consider them a progressive leader among municipal utilities in the adoption of renewable energy,” said Tim Derrick, General Manager of North America for SunEdison. “We are looking forward to a strong relationship with Riverside as we complete development and delivery of the North Lake solar project.” SunEdison plans to begin construction on the project in 2014 and begin delivering power in 2015.
In addition to the contract from RPU, SunEdison also was awarded 3 PPAs totaling 48 MW by Southern California Edison (SCE) and one 18.5-MW PPA by San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) under the Renewable Auction Mechanism (RAM) program. The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) approved the SCE contracts effective October 31, 2012 and is currently reviewing the SDG&E contract. The RAM program requires that projects start operating 24 months after CPUC approval.
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