A massive concentrating solar power (CSP) plant that’s just received a partial guarantee for an $852-million loan from the US Department of Energy (DOE) is expected to increase the nation’s currently installed CSP capacity by about 50 percent.
The 250-megawatt (MW) Genesis Solar Project is set to be built on land managed by the Bureau of Land Management in Riverside County, California.
The partial loan guarantee will support a utility-scale deployment of parabolic trough solar thermal technology that has been used commercially for more than two decades. The project is expected to produce enough electricity to power over 48,000 homes and avoid over 320,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually. Power from the project will be sold to Pacific Gas and Electric Company.
Credit Suisse AG, the project’s lender-applicant, submitted a funding application under the federal Financial Institution Partnership Program (FIPP). Through FIPP financing, the DOE guarantees up to 80 percent of the eligible costs of a loan provided to a renewable energy project by qualified financial institutions.
To be built, owned and operated by a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources, the Genesis Solar Project carries a total expected price-tag of $935 million. NextEra Energy has now closed on financing for the project and expects the plant’s twin 125-MW arrays to be completed in 2013 and 2014.