The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has approved the contract for Pacific Gas and Electric Company's (PG&E) to purchase 150MW of renewable power from Sempra Generation's Copper Mountain Solar 2 project in the US state of Nevada.
The first of the 92MW of solar panels at Copper Mountain Solar 2 are expected to be installed by the end of 2012, with the remaining 58MW slated for completion by 2015.
Under the terms of the 25-year contract, PG&E has the option to alter the commercial operation date of the second phase.
Jeffrey W. Martin, Sempra Generation president and CEO, said the project represents another big step for company as its portfolio for contracted renewable energy assets continues to grow throughout the US.
"There is a lot of excitement about starting construction on this major solar project, we and look forward to delivering another important source of clean energy to California consumers," said Martin.
Once finished, the facility will produce enough clean electricity to power some 45,000 households.
First Solar will provide the ground mounted thin film panels and serve as the contractor for engineering, procurement and construction of the project.
US-based solar developer Sempra Generation operates 58MW of utility-scale solar power in Boulder City and has an additional 150MW under construction in Arizona.
The company expects to have 300MW of solar generation in operation by early 2013. It operates and maintains natural gas-fueled power plants, as well as being a developer of solar and wind facilities that serve US markets.
Sempra Generation and Sempra Energy's other US operations outside of its two California utilities will be merged into a new business unit called Sempra US Gas & Power in January 2012.
Caption: PG&E to purchase 150MW renewable power from Sempra's solar project