Omaha, April 9, 2012 — Tenaska closed financing for Imperial Solar Energy Center South, a utility-scale photovoltaic solar generating plant in southern California.
The project represents Tenaska's expansion into solar power generation and is the first of what is expected to be a number of solar generating stations the company will develop in California and other states.
The 946-acre renewable energy project was developed in Imperial County by an affiliate, Tenaska Solar Ventures, LLC. A second project, Imperial Solar Energy Center West, is being developed nearby.
Nine banks provided debt financing. The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd. and Union Bank, N.A. led the bank group, which includes BBVA Compass, DZ Bank, Helaba, Key Bank, Lloyds TSB Bank, Royal Bank of Canada and Santander's Sovereign Bank.
On-site construction of Imperial Solar Energy Center South began in December. About 130 MW of electricity has been sold to San Diego Gas & Electric under a 25-year agreement, enough electricity to meet the needs of at least 44,000 California homes at peak demand.
First Solar, Inc. is the technology provider and the engineering, procurement and construction contractor for the project, using its advanced thin film photovoltaic modules.
Imperial Solar Energy Center South is expected to go into commercial operation in 2014, becoming one of the first solar projects to deliver power via the Sunrise Powerlink transmission line being constructed by SDG&E.