February 4, 2008 Cleantech America Inc. has received formal approval from the California Public Utilities Commission for its CalRENEW-1 solar facility. Due to begin operation in the spring of 2009, the plant is the largest utility-scale photovoltaic (PV) solar facility being developed under California’s Renewables Portfolio Standard program.
Located in the City of Mendota, CalRENEW-1 will be one of the most advanced photovoltaic solar facilities in the world, utilizing a variety of exciting photovoltaic technologies to produce 5 megawatts of emissions-free peaking power which will then be sold to Pacific Gas & Electric under a long-term power purchase agreement.
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“Utility-scale PV solar in California has just transitioned from hopeful concept to reality!” said Bill Barnes, CEO of Cleantech America Inc. “With the end of the CPUC 30 day comment period, we now have a formally approved long-term contract with PG&E and the green light to move ahead with equipment procurement and project financing. Equally important, we are beginning to realize the forecast pricing leverage that results from utility-size economies of scale. This greatly enhances photovoltaic solar as a competitive, near-term, large scale response to global warming and energy independence.”
The project is also expected to stimulate jobs growth with Cleantech America and the City of Mendota developing programs to re-train unemployed farm workers to become solar installers.