Sun’s fund will provide a purse of $60 million to support the installation of up to 25 solar electric systems in the US. The systems will be supplied by BP Solar as part of the BP Solar Energy Solutions offer.

The first three projects utilizing the fund will be installed in summer 2005 on three Staples facilities in Rialto, and Ontario California and Englewood, New Jersey. At a total of 680 kilowatts, these three systems will collectively generate about enough electricity to power 135 homes per year.

The fund will pay for the upfront capital costs of installing and operating the solar systems for companies and municipalities that qualify. Such entities will then pay a fixed rate for the electricity generated from the solar system for a ten to 20 year term.

Commenting on the initiative, Mary Shields, president of BP Solar North America, said: Part of our strategy to bring solar into the mainstream is to work with the large commercial market. The SunE Solar Fund gets us in front of this market allowing us to provide a clean energy source that competes with traditional utility power.