Citi and General Electric (GE) are advancing their renewable energy portfolios with a ray of sunshine.
The financial and energy giants are part of a consortium including MetLife Inc., Mitsubishi UFJ, and Financial Group Inc. The consortium took a majority stake of the 143-megawatt (MW) Catalina solar project from EDF Renewable Energy.
On private land southwest of the Piute and Tehachapi Mountains totaling 1,100 acres, the new farm will give a clean energy alternative to 35,000 San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) homeowners, according to the press release. That is the equivalent of 250,000 metric tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions taken off the highways each year.
“We appreciate the new investment with our partners in Catalina. It underscores solar power’s ability to provide clean, abundant and affordable power, while creating economic benefits,” said Director of Project Finance with EDF Renewable Energy Michael Wheeler.
Already starting operation in December 2012, the Catalina solar project is expected to be running at maximum capacity in the second quarter of 2013.
With solar costs coming down, big investors seem to having an eye for big solar projects in California. Recently, MidAmerica Solar purchased the 579MW Antelope Valley Solar Projects from SunPower.
This has been the second renewable energy investment within the past week for GE, which also purchased a stake in some major onshore wind projects previously owned by Iberdrola.
It’s nice to see institutional investors stepping up to the plate and putting their money down towards clean energy projects. If solar prices continue to decline, it could make downstream investments much more attractive, while defying naysayers who seem to think solar energy investment is going into a tailspin.
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