First Solar has divested controlling stake in its 300MW Desert Stateline solar power plant in California, US, to Southern Company subsidiary Southern Power, for an undisclosed amount.

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The project, which represents fourth shared acquisition between Southern Power and First Solar, is being developed by First Solar on 1,685 acres of federally managed public land in San Bernardino County.

Upon completion of the transaction, First Solar will operate and maintain the project, which is scheduled to be fully operational in the third quarter of 2016.

First Solar CEO Jim Hughes said: "Our strategic relationship capitalizes on each company’s core competencies, as well as the synergies obtainable though informed, enlightened collaboration.

"We are actively discussing ways to continue and broaden this relationship.

"This facility and other similar facilities allow leading energy companies to place First Solar’s advanced thin film PV technology at the heart of utility scale generation facilities, enabling power providers to include competitive, reliable renewable energy in their portfolios."

The facility features approximately 3.2 million of First Solar’s thin-film photovoltaic (PV) solar modules mounted on fixed-tilt tables to capable powering nearly 100,000 average homes.

Southern California Edison Company will purchase the electricity and associated renewable energy credits (RECs) generated by the facility, under a 20-year power purchase agreement.

The acquisition is a part of Southern Power’s plan to boost wholesale business through the acquisition and construction of generating assets which are supported by long-term contracts.


Image: The 300MW Desert Stateline solar plant is designed to generate electricity required to power nearly 100,000 average homes. Photo: courtesy of Southern Company.