August 11 (Renewables Now) - The 457-MW Palen solar complex in California’s Riverside County has achieved full commercial operations, the US Department of the Interior (DOI) announced this week.
The photovoltaic (PV) capacity was installed in stages on 3,478 acres of federal lands administered by the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and is coupled with a 50-MW battery storage system. The complex is expected to generate enough electricity to cover the consumption of around 116,000 homes.
EDF Renewables North America is the developer of the huge scheme. The company was in 2018 authorised to build the power plant and related transmission infrastructure to connect it to an existing substation of utility Southern California Edison. The solar panels were installed in four phases, starting in December 2020, which added between 100 MW and 132 MW each through the Maverick sites. The fifth stage covered the battery installation.
Among the huge plant’s power off-takers are Southern California Edison and Shell Energy North America and CleanPowerSF, operated by San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.
BLM noted it is reviewing applications for 64 clean energy projects on public lands in the western US, which can add more than 41 GW of renewable power capacity to the grid.