We are proud to announce that we’ve signed two long-term agreements with developer Terra-Gen for more than 162 megawatts (MW) of new solar plus battery storage! Together, the projects will produce enough renewable electricity to power nearly 79,000 homes and have the same climate impact as taking 1.3 million cars off the road.
These agreements mark our second and third long-term power purchase agreements (PPAs). Both projects will be built in Kern County with union labor.
- A 15-year PPA that will bring 100 MW of new solar energy to San José and will be operational by the end of 2022.
- A 12-year PPA that will provide 62 MW of renewable energy and will be operational by the end of 2021. The unique format of this agreement guarantees the delivery of 62 MW of renewable energy between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. every day. This will help meet demand in the late afternoon and evening hours, when electricity use is high but renewable energy availability is typically low. To meet this obligation, Terra-Gen will build more than 100 MW of new solar energy and new battery storage.
Here’s how this news will impact our customers:
- Investing in pollution-free renewable energy that helps meet the high electricity demand in the late afternoon and evening reduces reliance on local natural gas “peaker” plants that emit harmful pollutants. There are documented health benefits associated with the cleaner air that renewable energy helps us achieve, such as decreased asthma and other respiratory issues.
- Long-term agreements offer power at a lower price than short-term ones, so SJCE operational costs will decrease. Also, renewable energy prices have fallen drastically over the last years, to the point that the average total cost to build and operate renewables is often lower than fossil fuels. Since we’re a government agency, we are not-for-profit and have no shareholders. That means the savings from this contract will be passed directly to our customers— you! — in the form of lower rates.
- We know our customers want more renewable energy. Our base service, GreenSource, is sourced 45% from renewable energy, 6% more than PG&E’s standard mix, at rates 1% lower than PG&E. Going forward, SJCE expects to sign more contracts like these to meet customer demand. SJCE is on track to meet our Climate Smart San José goal to make GreenSource 100% carbon-neutral by 2021.
For more information, read our press release.