Sempra U.S. Gas & Power announced a 100 MW expansion of its Mesquite Solar complex in Arlington, Ariz., about 60 miles west of Phoenix. When completed in late 2016, the expansion, called Mesquite Solar 2, will produce enough power for 45,000 homes.
The entire output of the Mesquite Solar 2 expansion has been sold to Southern California Edison under a 20-year power purchase agreement. The contract is subject to approval by the California Public Utilities Commission.
"We are pleased to support Southern California Edison's commitment to diversify its growing renewable energy portfolio through the development of Mesquite Solar 2," said Kevin C. Sagara, president of renewables for Sempra U.S. Gas & Power. "The expansion of our landmark Mesquite Solar complex reflects the progressive vision and leadership by the state of Arizona and Maricopa County, and we look forward to delivering a new supply of clean, emission-free energy to California consumers."
Construction on Mesquite Solar 2 is expected to begin this fall. The project will create hundreds of construction jobs, part of a multi-phase expansion that will employ about 600 workers at peak.
"Mesquite Solar 2 represents quality jobs for Arizona residents, as well as an economic boost to local businesses," said Clint Hickman, Maricopa Counter supervisor. "I look forward to seeing this new phase of Mesquite Solar complex break ground later this year."
The 4,000-acre Mesquite Solar complex is among the largest photovoltaic solar facilities in the U.S. By late 2016, the complex's three phases are expected to produce a total of 400 MW.
The company also expects to complete the 94 MW Copper Mountain Solar 4 project in Nevada during that time frame. By year-end 2016, the combined solar power portfolio of projects jointly owned by Sempra U.S. Gas & Power in Arizona and Nevada is expected to grow to more than 1,000 MW.