The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) today approved six new long-term contracts between Southern California Edison (SCE) and renewable energy projects that will use wind, biomass, and geothermal energy to generate electricity.
As these facilities come online between 2006 and 2009, they will add between 141 and 427 megawatts* (MW) to SCE's renewable power portfolio, the nation's largest.
"We congratulate the winning bidders in our second major renewable solicitation since California adopted its renewable portfolio standard," said SCE CEO Alan Fohrer. "These contracts demonstrate SCE's continuing commitment to renewable energy and a significant step toward implementing the state's renewable policy."
Results of SCE's Most Recent Renewable Power Solicitation
Winning Bidder Location Type Length Initial Potential
Coram Energy Group Tehachapi Wind 20 yrs. 12 100
McCarthy Farms Biofuels Imperial Biomass 15 yrs. 5 15
SeaWest Wind Power San Wind 20 yrs. 37 50
Silvan Biomass Western Biomass 20 yrs. 7 22
Vulcan Power Co. Western Geothermal 20 yrs. 30 120
Western Wind Tehachapi Wind 20 yrs. 50 120
Totals 141 427
Five of the contracts will result in the construction of new renewable generation capacity at a time when California is attempting to cope with surging population growth and electricity demand. The sixth will significantly expand an existing facility.
"We are encouraged that this competitive solicitation process has yielded favorably priced renewable power for our customers and that no state subsidy is required for these projects," said SCE Senior Vice President of Power Procurement Pedro Pizarro. "We will continue to look for opportunities to add to our renewable portfolio."
- SCE leads the nation in renewable power delivery, procuring more than 13,000 gigawatt-hours** of renewable energy in 2004, more than any U.S. utility or state except for California.
- In addition to the six projects approved today, a promising new central station solar project was on the shortlist of the most beneficial proposals received during SCE's most recent competitive solicitation for renewable power contracts. Negotiations with the solar project developer are ongoing.
- Approximately 18.2% of the power SCE delivered to its customers during 2004 came from renewable sources. California's renewable portfolio standard (RPS) requires that investor-owned utilities procure at least an additional 1% per year of renewable power until they obtain 20% of their power from renewable sources no later than 2017. SCE continues to work toward full RPS compliance.
- SCE's current renewable portfolio can deliver 2,588 MW of electricity
- 1,021 MW from wind energy
- 892 MW from geothermal
- 354 MW from solar
- 226 MW from biomass
- 95 MW from small hydro
- More than 150 independent renewable power producers are under contract to SCE.
*A megawatt is enough power to serve 750 average homes during summer months.
**A gigawatt equals one billion watts.