Clean Power

Published on March 15th, 2013 | by James Ayre


900 MW Of New Californian Solar Projects Approved By Secretary Salazar

March 15th, 2013 by  

900 megawatts (MW) of new solar energy projects in California have just been approved by U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar. 750 MW is from the McCoy Solar Energy Project and the other 150 MW are coming from the Desert Harvest Solar Farm.

Image Credit: Black Rock Solar (some rights reserved)

Image Credit: Black Rock Solar (some rights reserved)

The two new utility-scale projects will both be located in California’s Riverside East Solar Energy Zone, which is considered to be one of the most suitable areas for solar development.

“These renewable energy projects reflect the Obama Administration’s commitment to expand domestic energy production on our public lands and diversify our nation’s energy portfolio,” Salazar was quoted as saying in a Department of Interior press release. “In just over four years, we have advanced 37 wind, solar and geothermal projects on our public lands – or enough to power more than 3.8 million American homes. These projects are bolstering rural economies by generating good jobs and reliable power and strengthening our national energy security.”

Once completed, the $100 million dollar McCoy Solar Energy Project will be one of the biggest photovoltaic projects located on public lands in the Californian desert, covering 1,780 hectares of land and powering about 200,000 homes. The project will be developed, owned, and maintained by McCoy Solar, a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources. It’s estimated that peak construction will result in 600 temporray construction jobs and about 20 new permanent jobs.

The second project, the Desert Harvest Solar Farm, will cover about 489 hectares and create enough power to supply around 45,000 homes with electricity. “The facility will be equipped with single-axis tracking technology, an on-site substation and a 230-kilovolt line to the Red Bluff Substation, which will connect the project to the Southern California Edison regional transmission grid.” Peak construction on the project should result in the creation of around 250 jobs.

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About the Author

's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

  • tibi stibi

    “750 MW is from the McCoy Solar Energy Project ”

    “Once completed, the $100 million dollar McCoy Solar Energy Project will be one of the biggest…”

    do i understand correctly that 750 MW costs 100 million $??

    • Considering that a 750MW coal plant costs about one billion to construct I’d say that this is a deal. True it will only produce electricity part of the time but that electricity will be without on going fuel costs. It will also avoid the environmental costs of burning coal. Why anyone can’t see that solar is a better choice is beyond me. Comparing the costs of solar to coal is an apples to oranges situation. When you add in the climate issue solar is a “no brainer”. A hammer or the guppy in your fish tank could understand that solar is the way to go.

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