Arizona's Mesquite Solar complex goes online

San Diego-based Sempra started work on the complex – with Suntech and Zachry Holdings Ltd performing design and construction of the first phase – in June 2011 and thus far the project has created around 530 jobs, 300 of them in construction, at its site in Arlington, Maricopa County.

Sempra plans a total generation capacity of 700 MW across the 4,000-acre site, 40 miles west of Phoenix.

The company has signed a 20-year PPA with Pacific Gas and Electric for the 150 MW generated by the first phase and the scheme was supported by the U.S. Energy Department’s loan guarantee scheme.