First Solar to Build 550 MW of Power Plants for SCE

First Solar, Inc. and Southern California Edison announced agreements this week to build two large-scale solar power projects in Riverside and San Bernardino counties in Southern California.

The installations, which will be among the largest of their kind, will have a generation capacity of 550 megawatts (MW) of solar-photovoltaic electricity, enough to provide power to approximately 170,000 homes. The agreements are subject to approval by the California Public Utilities Commission.

First Solar will engineer, procure and construct the two solar facilities. The projects are the 250-MW Desert Sunlight project near Desert Center, California, and the 300-MW Stateline project in northeastern San Bernardino County. Pending network upgrades and receipt of permits, construction is scheduled to begin in 2012 for Desert Sunlight and 2013 for Stateline.

Both projects are expected to be completed in 2015. Several hundred construction jobs are expected to be created at each site. When completed, the solar projects could produce 1.2 billion kilowatt-hours of clean energy per year.

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