EDF Renewables North America (EDFR) announced that the Palen Solar site is fully operational and delivering decarbonized energy to the grid. The site consists of four projects totaling 620 megawatts (MWdc) of solar PV plus 200 MWh of battery energy storage.
The projects, which utilize horizontal single-axis tracking technology, are located adjacent to each other on unincorporated land in Riverside County, California, administered by the Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The BLM designated this area as a Solar Energy Zone (SEZ) and Development Focus Area, land set aside for utility-scale renewable energy development.
In addition to economic benefits for Riverside County, including an average local spend of $24,000 a month during construction, the projects combined generate enough decarbonized energy to meet the consumption of up to 217,000 average California homes1. This is equivalent to avoiding more than 1 million metric tons of CO₂ emissions annually2 which represents the greenhouse gas emissions from 227,000 gasoline-powered passenger vehicles driven over the course of one year.
Construction activity commenced in early 2020 with Maverick 1 and Maverick 4, followed by Maverick 6 and Maverick 7 in early 2021. The projects were completed in sequence starting in December 2020. At peak construction, the sites employed over 500 personnel, majority of which were local to Riverside County.
Benoit Rigal, Senior Vice President, Implementation & Projects Management for EDF Renewables North America, commented, “The Maverick projects are the cornerstone of our large-scale solar and storage growth and expertise. The renewable energy industry has experienced significant volatility over the past years battling both unprecedented pandemic and supply chain constraints. We are excited to now have all four projects operating at full capacity and to contribute to California’s climate goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 40% below 1990 levels by 2030.”
EDF Renewables’ Asset Optimization group will perform operations and maintenance services for the life of the Project. The group will provide NERC compliance support, remote monitoring, and balance-of-plant management to maximize power production.