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Californian solar thermal plant gets $450m boost

solar-panel3.jpgIt’s the Greenbang birthday coming up next week and the girl is quickly trying to come up with a wish list.  She recently asked her rich uncle Scolari if he’d be able to give her that solar power plant she’s always wanted.  Sadly, he declined as he’s moving from Portugal to Chelsea and the cost of housing is about to rise for him.

However, it seems that the state of California’s uncle has no such problems.  Martifer, the Portuguese conglomerate, has stated it will  build and operate a hybrid solar-thermal electricity plant in California.  The plant is scheduled to be online by 2011 and the investment is worth $450m (£220m).

Quoted in Reuters:

The plant, with a capacity of 106.8 mega watts, will sell electricity to Pacific Gas and Electricity (PG&E) under 20-year power purchase agreements.

“The power purchase agreements encompass a firm commitment by PG&E to purchase all scheduled energy produced,” Martifer said in a statement.

The plant, which will be made up of two units, will be 80 per cent owned by Martifer and 20 per cent by U.S. partner Clean Energy Ventures.

The plant is expected to be ready in 2011.

Martifer said it intends to finance the project through a combination of equity and debt and will benefit from a 30 percent tax credit on solar energy investments.

The plant will produce energy from a combination of advanced solar thermal technology and biomass from agricultural waste.

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