First Solar Inc. and NRG Energy Inc. started commercial operation last month of the largest photovoltaic (PV) solar project in California. First Solar developed and built the 21MW power plant in Blythe, Calif., which was acquired last month by NRG through its wholly owned subsidiary NRG Solar. Electricity generated by the solar facility is being sold to Southern California Edison (SCE) under a 20-year power purchase agreement. Located in Riverside County about 200 miles east of Los Angeles, the Blythe plant is the largest thin-film PV project in the United States and is five times the size of the next-largest PV project in California. NRG estimates that at peak capacity, the project can supply the power needs of almost 17,000 homes while helping California meet its renewable energy goals.
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