Non-polluting power from the sun

What are Solar Farms?
Solar farms are literally "farms" for harnessing electricity from the sun using the technology of photovoltaics (PV). They can range in size from a few dozen acres to a few thousand acres, generating from 1 megawatt (MW) to hundreds of MWs on each farm. The benefits of a solar farm are of course the efficiencies of using existing open land on which to place thousands upon thousands of solar panels without the barriers and obstacles generally encountered on rooftops.

Major Solar Farm Projects in Ontario, Canada
Several nations around the world, most notably Germany and Spain, have created programs that incentivize companies and individuals to install PV, ultimately creating a large scale solar energy infrastructure in that country. In fact, Germany was the fastest growing major PV market in the world from 2006 to 2007. By 2008, 5,300 MW of PV was installed, or 35% of the world total.

With 25 million acres of farmland and a well developed electricity infrastructure, Ontario is prime for installing solar. To complete the puzzle in terms of feasibility AND profitability, the Province of Ontario recently approved the Feed-in Tariff Program (FIT). The FIT provides contracts between the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) and qualified solar projects in Ontario wherein energy produced by the solar farm will then be purchased at a guaranteed rate for 20 years by the OPA (a Moody’s Aa1 rated utility).

The available solar power in Southern Ontario is approximately 1300 hours per year, or about 50% more than the approximately 900 hours per year available in Germany. Utilizing this abundance of clean, renewable energy along with the guarantees in place with the new FIT program, solar is immediately economically viable today, and well into future. Further, PV installations operate for many years with little maintenance or intervention after their initial set-up, so after the initial capital cost of building a solar power plant, operating costs are extremely low compared to other existing power technologies.

Each project in Ontario is a maximum of 10 MW in size and will reduce CO2 emissions of up to 240,000 tons in just the first 20 years, the equivalent of about 40,000 cars. Each system built creates a stronger, cleaner, sustainable energy grid, especially during the summer when sun is aplenty and electricity demand is at its highest. The electricity generated by each 10 MW system is not only clean and renewable, but is enough to power approximately 2,000 homes annually.

Solar Farms in California
With its plentiful sunshine and large areas of undeveloped land, California is an obvious choice for solar farms. In fact, some areas of California garner over 2,200 hours of average useable sunshine each year—more than double that available in Germany, Spain and some areas of Ontario, Canada.

Yet, even with this abundance of sun the current California Feed-in tariff combined with the US government tax incentives don’t compare to the attractiveness and viability of the Feed-in tariff programs implemented in Germany and Ontario, Canada. However, there are bills under discussion (California AB 32) that would provide a Feed-in tariff sufficient to make solar farms just as attractive in California as in these countries, and we are poised to take advantage of these opportunities when they do come to fruition.

Currently, CleanPower and its affiliates are in progress on a 4MW project located on approximately 35 acres in the hills of Temecula, CA. The project has nearby grid access and the interconnection approval is currently being processed by Southern California Edison under their Feed-In Tariff Renewable Standard Contracts program.

We are also in negotiations on a 250 acre site adjacent to a substation in Victorville, CA. Preliminary design plans are for five 5 MW (total 25MW) tracking systems to be built in phases, and will be under the new anticipated Feed-in Tariff program (AB 32) or the proposed PUC Reverse Auction program.

CleanPower Energy Systems, Inc.
146 N. San Fernando Blvd., Suite 213
Burbank, California 91502
Phone: 818.338.6030
Fax: 818.338.6039
CleanPower Energy Systems, Inc. • 146 N. San Fernando Blvd., Suite 213
Burbank, California 91502 • Phone: 818.338.6030 • Fax: 818.338.6039

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