Solar Millennium, the U.S.-based project development subsidiary of Solar Trust of America, has received a recommendation for final approval for licensing by the California Energy Commission (CEC) for its proposed Blythe Solar Power project. This marks an important stage in the company’s efforts to obtain final approval to build four 242MW plants in Riverside County.
By offering this final approval, the CEC has determined that the planned facility, which is capable of producing a combined 968MW of generating capacity, would have no significant environmental impact and complies with all applicable laws and regulations.
Josef Eichhammer, president of Solar Trust of America and CEO of Solar Millennium, said, “We believe that we will obtain the record of decision for the construction permit by the Bureau of Land Management for Blythe in October. We plan to receive all construction permits this fall and to finalize the financing for our first project such that we can start construction by the end of this year.”
Uwe T. Schmidt, chairman and chief executive officer of Solar Trust of America, said, “We are extremely pleased with the CEC’s recommendation and efforts to accelerate the approval process for our Blythe project. Our nation’s clean energy development initiatives are at a critical crossroads, and we expect to be a leading force in helping California meet its renewable energy goals and provide a significant boost to the state’s economy.”
The recommendation may be considered for vote by the CEC Commissioners in September, following a public comment period. The committee’s recommendation also includes conditions that will ensure that construction and operation of the power plants will comply with all laws and regulations.