While ten nukes were shut down or cancelled in 2013, solar power continues its compound-interest-curve ever-faster deployment. Zero (0) new nukes were built in 2013 and in October all new U.S. utility-scale power was solar. Unfortunately, the biggest of those was Southern Company’s Campo Verde, which powers California, not Georgia or the southeast, but that is changing now.
Todd Woody wrote for The Atlantic 26 November 2013, Solar Energy Was America’s Sole New Power Source in October: Get ready for a photovoltaic building boom.
In October, power plants generating 530 megawatts of electricity came online in the United States. And every single electron put on the grid came from the sun, according to a report released today.
That’s apparently not even counting rooftop solar.
The report is Solar the sole capacity completed in October, at 530 MW, by Althena Enguerra for SNL 25 November 2013.
Campo Verde Solar was the largest unit completed, with 139 MW of photovoltaic capacity. The Imperial County, Calif., plant was the fifth solar facility jointly acquired by Southern Co. subsidiary Southern Power Co. and Turner Renewable Energy. First Solar Inc., which built the plant, is also in charge of its operations and maintenance for 10 years. The entire capacity of the facility is to be sold to Sempra Energy San Diego Gas & Electric Co. under a 20-year power purchase agreement. An independent study showed that the facility, the largest solar PV facility owned by Southern, is expected to provide economic benefits of about $239 million to Imperial County.
As I said to Southern Company CEO Tom Fanning back in May 2013 at the SO Stockholder Meeting,
Okay, so — and there’s a lot of economic advantages to Campo Verde. In jsq longer Campo Verde PR this longer version of the press release, and I’m talking about building the economy, 239 million over the next 30 years to the local county, $17.5 million in local tax revenue, 250 construction jobs. Unfortunately, that’s in California.
However, we can have that right here in the Southeast, which is where I want to compliment Paul Bowers at Georgia Power because Georgia Power is helping connect two megawatts of solar power coming into Valdosta, Georgia, in the near future and perhaps some more. And Georgia Power is helping connect the megawatt on the roof of Dublin High School in Dublin, Georgia. Which, by the way, is going to use MAGE solar panels; that’s a German company but it’s manufacturing in Dublin, Georgia. And I believe some of those panels going in in Valdosta are Suniva panels, manufactured in Norcross, Georgia.
And since GA PSC in July required Georgia Power to more than double the amount of solar power it buys, Southern Company may finally deploy significant solar power in the southeast.