Canada-based Plutonic Power and GE Energy Financial Services have agreed to acquire three photovoltaic (PV) solar facilities with a combined capacity of 50MW from First Solar in Canada.

The construction of the facilities is expected to begin by mid-2011 in Ontario.

Plutonic Power is expected to make an equity contribution of approximately CAD$6m and serve as the projects’ managing partner.

Project debt will be arranged by First Solar on behalf of Plutonic Power and GE Energy Financial Services and is expected to be in place at financial close, which coincides with the start of commercial operation.

First Solar will continue developing the facilities, located in Amherstburg (10MW), Belmont (20MW) and Walpole (20MW), and will provide engineering, procurement and construction services and operations and maintenance services under long-term contracts.

Permitting the projects under the province’s Renewable Energy Approval process is expected in the spring of 2011.

The facilities will sell their power to the Ontario Power Authority under 20-year energy purchase agreements and will interconnect to the province’s distribution grid at five points.

Combined, the facilities are expected to produce enough clean, sustainable electricity to power approximately 6,300 local homes and avoid 14,600 tons of carbon dioxide a year.