Simon Property Group, Inc. (Simon) has completed installation of a 173 kilowatt (kW) solar facility on the roof of The Shops at Mission Viejo in Mission Viejo, California. Simon also entered into a power purchase agreement with Element Markets LLC (Element Markets) for the output of installed solar facility. Construction on the solar facility started on December 3, 2008 and has been completed in 20 days, on December 23, 2008.

This is an exciting project that will help us gain valuable experience with solar installations, said George Caraghiaur, vice president of energy services at Simon. As the solar industry matures and technological improvements continue to drive down the cost of installations, we expect that solar renewable energy purchases will become a cost-effective component of our sustainability strategy. We chose to partner with Element Markets as they are a leader in the field of renewable energy and carbon management.

The installation started during our holiday season and there wasn’t a disruption to normal business for our tenants or customers, Melissa Palencia, the mall manager of The Shops at Mission Viejo said. Now, Palencia continued, even on a cloudy, rainy day, our solar panels provide us with up to 130 kilowatts of savings.

We are entering a new era for renewable power generation and we are very pleased to partner with Simon to identify renewable opportunities across Simon’s portfolio, said Randall Lack, managing director of client services for Element Markets. With advances in technology and the national agenda for non-fossil power generation, Simon is positioning itself in a leadership role to economically participate in renewable generation.