BrightSource Energy has agreed to provide 1.310 GW of solar thermal power to Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E). The power purchase agreement contracts, which supersede the 900-MW deal signed between the two companies in April 2008, encompass seven concentrating solar thermal power plant projects to be built in the Southern California desert.
The first BrightSource solar plant, sized at 110 MW, will be located in Ivanpah and is contracted to begin operation in 2012. The CST company, which employs the proprietary Luz Power Tower technology, says it will build and place in commercial operation each of its plants as quickly as permitting and infrastructure allow.
All seven projects are expected to produce 3666 GW-hours of power each year, equal to the annual consumption of about 530,000 average homes.
“The solar thermal projects…exemplify PG&E’s commitment to increasing the amount of renewable energy we provide to our customers throughout northern and central California,” said John Conway, senior vice president of energy supply for PG&E. “Through these agreements with BrightSource, we can harness the sun’s energy to meet our customers’ power requirements when they need it most–during hot summer days.”
“Today’s agreements reflect the technological milestones that the BrightSource Energy team has achieved over the past year,” said John Woolard, CEO of BrightSource. “Our technology is setting the bar for efficient production of solar energy. We’re thrilled by the opportunity to help PG&E and other leaders bring energy customers more clean and reliable solar energy.”
BrightSource inked a similar deal with Southern California Edison in February 2009. That agreement provides for 1.3 GW of power to be supplied by the solar company to the utility, with the first 100 MW coming online from a plant also located in Ivanpah in 2013.