8minutenergy signs EPC deal with Gehrlicher for three Calilfornia projects


California-based 8minutenergy Renewables has tapped Gehrlicher Solar America Corp. (GSAC) to handle engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services for three solar projects in Kern County, California.

The projects, owned by an 8minutenergy subsidiary, include the 16.66 MW-ac Redcrest Solar Farm, the 26.66 MW-ac Hayworth Solar Farm and the 15 MW-ac Woodmere Solar Farm.

Collectively known as the Redwood Solar Farm, the projects have power purchase sgreements (PPA) in place with Southern California Edison (SCE), Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and the City of Palo Alto Utilities. A single large generation interconnection agreement (LGIA) was previously signed by 8minutenergy, PG&E and the California Independent Systems Operator Corporation (CAISO).

"We reviewed bids from several EPC companies," said Steve Clark, vice president of EPC at 8minutenergy Renewables. "After a rigorous due diligence process, Gehrlicher Solar America stood out due to the depth of its technical expertise, solid reputation and because it has an impressive track record. We look forward to partnering with them on the construction of these projects."

"At 75 MW-dc of capacity, Redwood Solar Farm is our largest project to date in the North America," said Jerry Shinn, president, Gehrlicher Solar America Corp. "As a top-tier developer, we are pleased to add 8minutenergy to our expanding portfolio. Since 2011, we have experienced significant growth and continue to move up in solar EPC rankings.”

Construction on the solar projects is scheduled to begin in December 2014, with completion and grid connection projected for June through September 2016. The scope of work for GSAC, a division of M+W Group, includes engineering, design, procurement, construction and commissioning of the three projects. 8minutenergy has contracted with First Solar for cadmium telluride thin-film photovoltaic modules and trackers for the projects, with installation to be executed by GSAC.

8minutenergy is separately contracting for the projects’ high voltage facilities, which will include a plant substation and a generation tie transmission line connecting to PG&E’s Lamont Substation.

The Redwood Solar Farm’s annual production capacity of 152 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity will produce enough renewable solar energy to serve nearly 30,000 Californians.

The Kern County Board of Supervisors recently approved Conditional Use Permits (CUP) for 8minutenergy’s utility-scale solar PV projects totaling up to 135 MW under development in Kern County.