E.ON completes inaugural Californian solar farm


Germany’s increasingly pro-solar energy firm E.ON has announced today the completion of its first large-scale solar farm in California – and hinted strongly that many more such developments are in the pipeline across the U.S.

The 20 MW Alamo Solar farm in San Bernardino County, California, has now been connected to the grid and sold to Dominion, making it the first solar project to be sold by E.ON.

"The Alamo Solar transaction demonstrates E.ON’s continued ability to deliver high-value renewable energy projects, either solar or wind, that attract the interest of world-class energy investors like Dominion," remarked E.ON North America VP for partnering, Nathanael Esposito.

E.ON Solar president Steve Trenholm added that the company intends to build more solar projects in California that "create jobs and clean energy that doesn’t use water in the production of electricity". A record drought has struck the state in recent months, casting water shortages across vast swathes of the land and seriously undermining California’s hydropower efforts.

"E.ON Solar is rapidly expanding its development pipeline across the country with a flexible business model that allows us to work with utilities and others to own and operate projects, or build turnkey projects," Trenholm added.

The company was recently selected by Tucson Electric Power (TEP) to build a 14 MW solar PV array for the U.S. Army’s Ft. Huachuca base in Sierra Vista. "This is an exciting time for the U.S. market and E.ON is at the forefront of delivering clean energy that doesn’t require water to produce electricity," said Trenholm.

In December last year, E.ON made the seismic decision to turn its back on fossil fuels, announcing that it will pivot towards a renewable energy future with the creation of a new public company in 2016 that will oversee its fossil fuel assets.

The original entity will instead focus on renewable energy, distribution and direct services to household and commercial customers.