Six new on-site solar energy facilities in the Los Angeles area, each financed and developed under a solar power purchase agreement, have reached full commercial operation, says Solar Power Partners (SPP), a California-based independent solar power producer. The facilities include a 239 kW system at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena; a 601 kW system at BT’s North America corporate headquarters offices in El Segundo; and Safeway’s Vons grocery stores in Monrovia (230 kW), Oxnard (188 kW), Corona (205 kW), and Murrieta (198 kW).
The solar power purchase agreements (PPAs), long-term energy financing solutions, help customers turn to solar energy without the business or costs of solar facility ownership, operation, or maintenance, says SPP. A solar PPA allows SPP’s host customers to pay only for the energy produced by the system, while SPP, alone and/or through its subsidiaries, develops, operates, and maintains the system for the length of the agreement, usually over twenty years. SPP’s host customers can enjoy predictable energy rates for the life of their agreement.
SPP’s dedicated asset management team operates each facility using web-based monitoring technology, which provides performance data every 15 minutes and operation alerts as necessary. SPP manages all aspects of preventative maintenance and repairs when needed.
The Caltech solar system features a 239 kW fixed rooftop array on the Holliston parking garage. The system at BT’s office building in El Segundo is a 601 kW fixed rooftop and elevated system, including a tracking system over the main parking lot. The tracking modules move during the day to follow the sun, thereby increasing energy production. The system is expected to generate approximately one thousand GWh of renewable electricity each year. The four Safeway stores in Monrovia, Oxnard, Corona, and Murrieta total 821 kW in size, and are all fixed rooftop systems.
Financing of the solar facilities was partially provided by Bank of America in the form of a tax equity investment and Energy Investors Funds through its United States Power Fund III.