Apple Announces Ambitious $850 Million Solar Project

Apple Announces Ambitious $850 Million Solar Project

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Apple CEO Tim Cook announced the company's most ambitious solar project ever at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference today.

Today we’re announcing our biggest, boldest, and most ambitious project ever. We are building, or partnering, with First Solar to build a solar farm in Monterrey County, so not too far from here.  It's 1300 acres and is enough power for almost 60,000 California homes and it's enough to provide renewable energy for all of our new campus and every other office we have in California

The new solar farm will cost about $850 million to build. We'll have more details as they become available.

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Cook is still speaking you can listen to the live audio stream here.

The official announcement from First Solar:

First Solar, Inc. today announced that Apple has committed $848 million for clean energy from First Solar’s California Flats Solar Project in Monterey County, Calif. Apple will receive electricity from 130 megawatts (MW)AC of the solar project under a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA), the largest agreement in the industry to provide clean energy to a commercial end user.

“Apple is leading the way in addressing climate change by showing how large companies can serve their operations with 100 percent clean, renewable energy,” said Joe Kishkill, Chief Commercial Officer for First Solar. “Apple’s commitment was instrumental in making this project possible and will significantly increase the supply of solar power in California. Over time, the renewable energy from California Flats will provide cost savings over alternative sources of energy as well as substantially lower environmental impact.”

The 2,900-acre California Flats Solar Project occupies 3 percent of a property owned by Hearst Corporation in Cholame, Calif. Construction is expected to begin in mid-2015, and to be completed by the end of 2016. The output of the remaining 150MW of the project will be sold to Pacific Gas & Electric under a separate long-term PPA, and the project is fully subscribed between the Apple and PG&E PPAs.

In January, the Monterey County Planning Commission unanimously approved the California Flats Solar Project, sending the project to the Monterey County Board of Supervisors, which will consider final approval of the project today.

Building on its proven record of developing, building and operating utility-scale solar power plants, First Solar has placed a strategic focus on directly providing large commercial and industrial customers with wholesale electricity through long-term agreements. This deal marks the first wholesale commercial and industrial PPA executed by First Solar.

Apple Announces Ambitious $850 Million Solar Project

treehugger - February 12, 2015 at 6:13am
It's about time local gov subsidize homeowners so that every rooftop should be covered with solar panels. Then we work on artifical lakes in every district to save grey water. In 10 years, California will be a lush green tropics.