First Solar (Nasdaq: FSLR) has begun Phase I construction at the 22-MW Barilla Solar Project in Pecos County, Texas.
First Solar will build, commission, and operate the facility. The project will provide electricity to areas with greater peak energy demand. Municipal utilities, electric cooperatives, larger commercial, industrial and residential customers will be able to use energy produced.
“An additional benefit is that solar power plants require no water to generate electricity,” Brian Kunz, First Solar’s Vice President of Project Development, said in an interview. “This is important in West Texas, where scarce water resources must be preserved.”
The Barilla Solar Project is expected to be complete by mid-2014. First Solar says it is considering selling the project to a long-term owner.