October 8, 2010 |
Brightsource Energy Inc. on Thursday cleared its final permitting hurdle for its proposed solar power plant. It expects to begin construction in the California desert in the next few weeks. The federal Bureau of Land Management approved the Oakland company's Ivanpah Electric Generating System project, set for remote San Bernardino County near the Nevada border. With a $1.37-billion loan guarantee from the Department of Energy, the project could be one of the first local commercial solar plants to break ground in years.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 25, 2010 |
After a rough ride through narrow desert washes, Alfredo Figueroa came to a clearing and ordered the vehicles to halt. The giants were waiting. Figueroa strode briskly across the plain. Before him, clear lines in the stony sand formed a 200-foot-long image of the flute-playing Native American god Kokopelli. Beside him was Cicimitl, an Aztec spirit said to guide souls to the afterlife. "No one has a clue that this stuff is out here," Figueroa said, picking his way around a massive foot.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 19, 2010
Land purchased decades ago in Palmdale for an intercontinental jetport that was never built might become a solar power plant under a proposal advanced Monday by the Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners. The board voted to solicit the ideas of energy companies and utilities interested in constructing a solar farm on part of the 17,750 acres that Los Angeles World Airports bought in the early 1970s for more than $100 million. "This is a potentially excellent use of that land as we wait for an airport," said commission President Alan Rothenberg.
February 9, 2010 |
French nuclear energy giant Areva has jumped into the U.S. renewable energy market with the acquisition of Ausra Inc., a Mountain View, Calif., solar power plant start-up. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Areva executive Anil Srivastava said the sale price was in line with the $418 million that rival Siemens of Germany spent last year to acquire Solel Solar Systems, an Israeli solar power plant builder. That would be a decent payday for Ausra's investors, which include Silicon Valley venture capital firms Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Khosla Ventures.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 2, 2009 |
Nearly a century after Los Angeles drained Owens Lake by diverting its water to the Los Angeles Aqueduct, the city now hopes to generate solar energy on the dusty salt flats it left behind. The Department of Water and Power's board of commissioners Tuesday unanimously approved a renewable energy pilot project that would cover 616 acres of lake bed with solar arrays -- a possible precursor to a mammoth solar farm that could cover thousands of acres. City utility officials hope that, along with generating power for L.A., the solar panels would reduce the fierce dust storms that rise from the dry lake bed. To comply with federal clean air standards, the DWP must control the dust that has plagued the Owens Valley for decades.
October 23, 2009 |
Skyline Solar, a Silicon Valley start-up, has become the latest green energy company to tap the struggling auto industry's manufacturing muscle. The Mountain View, Calif., company said Thursday that components for its solar power plants were being made in a Troy, Mich., car factory operated by Cosma International, a division of auto manufacturing giant Magna International. The same machines that stamp out doors, hoods and other car body parts are now making metal arrays that hold Skyline's photovoltaic panels.
August 19, 2009 |
ROSEMEAD, Calif. -- Southern California Edison says two solar-powered plants will be built east of Los Angeles to supply the utility with enough energy for 170,000 homes. Edison announced Tuesday that it's made a deal with Arizona-based First Solar, Inc. to build plants near Desert Center in Riverside County and Stateline in San Bernardino County. When the plants are completed in 2015, they'll provide up to 550 megawatts of electricity. Edison says the projects also would create several hundred construction jobs.
June 7, 2009
Re: "A solar plant worth its salt," May 29: It seems to me that 100,000 homes is not many for such a huge endeavor. Why aren't developers working on single-household solar set-ups? Nancy Zierenberg Tucson, Ariz.
May 29, 2009 |
Just past Barstow on Interstate 15, Las Vegas-bound travelers can eye a tower resembling a lighthouse rising out of the desert encircled by more than 1,800 mirrors the size of billboards. The complex is often mistaken for a science fiction movie set, but it is actually a power plant that once used molten salt, water and the sun's heat to produce electricity.