Order Focus: Canadian Solar powers four Belectric PV plants in California

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Canadian Solar has been selected to power four photovoltaic (PV) plants by Belectric with a total capacity of 7.8MW in San Bernardino County, California.

A total of 25,920 Canadian Solar CS6X 300W MaxPower Polycrystalline modules were used, with 6,480 on each plant. The PV installation will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 10,290 tonnes, equivalent to removing 1,375 cars from the road.

The four plants were commissioned on 28 December 2013 and subsequently sold to independent power producer Sustainable Power Group. Three of the projects, Otoe Solar, Navajo Solar and Powatan Solar are located in San Bernardino’s Apple Valley, the last, Industry Solar is in Adelanto.

All four are approved for feed-in tariffs under Southern California Edison's (SCE) California Renewable Energy Small Tariff (CREST). The SCE CREST programme aims to develop smaller scale utility plants to provide distributed energy generation.

According to Belectric, the German company is “one of the first companies to successfully complete a SCE CREST project”. Belectric chief executive officer Dr Karl Markert said the company was “approached in early 2013 with the four projects that needed to be completed before their CREST Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) expired at year end. It was our relationships with SCE, San Bernardino County, and leading solar power companies, like Canadian Solar that greatly assisted us in meeting very tight project schedules. Our in-house development, engineering and construction team built on these relationships and rose to the challenge to permit, design, build, and commission the projects in record time”.

The news comes as Canadian Solar also announced the sale of a 10MW AC plant in Ontario, Canada, to a fund managed by investors BlackRock. The Westbrook utility-scale solar plant is currently under construction with Canadian Solar performing engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) duties and contracted to provide operations and maintenance (O&M) once the plant is commissioned, expected to be in the second quarter of this year. Westbrook will be built with a total of 47,160 Canadian Solar CS6X modules, receiving a 20 year feed-in tariff under the Ontario Power Authority scheme. As of the end of 2013, BlackRock had US$4.3 trillion assets under management.

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