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Published on August 14th, 2008 | by Ariel Schwartz

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2 Large Solar Plants Planned in California, Will Each Be 10 Times Bigger Than Largest Now in Service

August 14th, 2008 by  


solar panel array

Pacific Gas and Electric Now Under Contract to Deliver 24 Percent of Energy from Renewables by 2013

In a landmark announcement today, Optisolar and the Sunpower Corporation said they plan to build 2 solar plants that will produce a total of 800 MW of power. During peak hours, the plants will produce as much energy as a small nuclear reactor or a large coal plant.

According to Sunpower chairman Thomas H. Werner, the Sunpower plant alone will have as much photovoltaic capacity as was installed worldwide during the past year.





The solar power created from the plants will provide enough energy for 239,000 homes annually.

With the addition of the two proposed plants , PG&E is now under contract to produce 24% of future power deliveries from renewable resources (wind, biomass, geothermal, solar). This will exceed the 20% renewable energy requirement imposed by California.

Hopefully the saying “As goes California, so goes the nation” applies here, as many other states get more than enough sunshine to match California.

>> Calculate the solar potential of your California home with the Renewzle solar power calculator.

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About the Author

was formerly the editor of CleanTechnica and is a senior editor at Co.Exist. She has contributed to SF Weekly, Popular Science, Inhabitat, Greenbiz, NBC Bay Area, GOOD Magazine, and more. A graduate of Vassar College, she has previously worked in publishing, organic farming, documentary film, and newspaper journalism. Her interests include permaculture, hiking, skiing, music, relocalization, and cob (the building material). She currently resides in San Francisco, CA.



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