Duke Energy Solar Project Achieves Commercial Operation
- Jun 20, 2019
Duke Energy Renewables’ 150-megawatt North Rosamond solar project in Kern County, Calif., has begun commercial operation. The facility is the largest solar project in the energy operator’s fleet and its sixth solar generation facility in the county.
North Rosamond consists of more than 477,000 solar panels spread across 1,188 acres outside Rosamond. The facility’s design, procurement of photovoltaic modules, inverters, the balance of plant systems and construction of the project have been performed by First Solar Electric California’s EPC subsidiary under a fixed-price EPC agreement for the project.
During peak construction, 500 employees worked on the project. The energy it generates, estimated to power approximately 71,000 homes, is sold to Southern California Edison under a 15-year PPA.
Recent solar addition
Duke Energy acquired the North Rosamond solar project from a subsidiary of Clearway Energy Group in April, not long after it had purchased Lapetus Solar Energy, the first large scale solar project in Andrews County, Texas. In the North Rosamond deal, tax equity financing was provided by the U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corp., the tax credit division of U.S. Bank, M&T Bank’s Commercial Equipment Finance Group and Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America.
CIT’s Power and Energy group led a consortium of lending institutions that provided construction loan and ITC bridge loan facilities to fund equipment, engineering, construction and other costs associated with the completion of the project. These facilities will be converted to a single term loan facility that will be used to finance the project over the next 15 years.