8minute Solar Energy (8minute) announced that the company has executed a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Clean Power Alliance (CPA). The 400-megawatt (300 MWac) Rexford 1 Solar & Storage Center in Tulare County includes 180 MW/540 megawatt-hours (MWh) of energy storage, which means it will reliably deliver renewable energy to the grid day or night or on cloudy days. When it becomes operational in 2023, Rexford will provide enough energy for over 370,000 Californians, making it not only the largest solar-plus-storage project for CPA, but also the largest for any community choice aggregator (CCA) to date. The plant will offset about 600,000 tonnes of CO2 annually, or the equivalent of planting 12,000 trees every single day, for ten years in a row.
"The recent blackouts and continued wildfires in California offer sobering proof of the urgent need for more renewable and reliable energy generation that both fortifies our grid and fights climate change – and large-scale solar paired with energy storage is the most efficient, lowest-cost way to achieve just that," said Dr. Tom Buttgenbach, Founder and CEO of 8minute. "We are proud to partner with Clean Power Alliance, the largest clean choice energy provider in California. Our new generation of solar-plus-storage power plants are the future of energy – replacing an aging fleet of fossil fuel power plants with more economical and cleaner solutions and creating good jobs when they are needed most. This partnership is yet another example of California taking the lead on next-generation technology, and we expect to build a lot more solar and energy storage centers across the United States."
The Rexford 1 Solar & Storage Center will be constructed on private, low-productivity disturbed farmland in Tulare County, and is an example of the economic value that solar projects can provide to private landowners. Construction, which will begin in early 2022, will create over 400 well-paying union construction jobs, and approximately one thousand indirect jobs, in addition to contributing more than $200 million to the local economy over the life of the project. The investment, construction and operational inflows to Tulare County represent a huge economic boost for decades to come.
"Solar-plus-storage is not only the cleanest way to increase grid reliability, it's also the smartest and most cost-effective," said Ted Bardacke, Executive Director of Clean Power Alliance. "We are excited to partner on a project of this scale with 8minute, a trusted Los Angeles-based developer that shares our commitment to accelerating the clean energy transition in California."
Rexford 1 marks 8minute's second project with CCAs, and underscores 8minute's continued success on record-breaking solar-plus-storage projects that are helping ensure reliability and advance California's ambitious clean energy goals. 8minute has contracted 4.5 GW of solar projects, with over 18GW of solar energy capacity and 24 GWh of storage under development across California, Texas, and the Southwestern United States.