GE unit invests in California solar project

GE Energy Financial Services, unit of Fairfield-based General Electric, along with Citi, Union Bank and Metropolitan Life Insurance, has completed an equity investment in EDF Renewable Energy’s Catalina Solar plant in Rosamon, Calif., one of the world’s largest photovoltaic plants, located on 1,100 acres in the Mojave Desert.
This transaction contributes to GE Energy Financial Services’ 1-gigawatt, $1.5 billion solar investment commitments, comprising over 50 installations.
The investment group initially acquired a minority ownership stake in the 143-megawatt project from EDF in late 2012, prior to the first 60 MWp going online. Following construction completion and the achievement of commercial operations in August, the group purchased the remaining stake and converted the entire structure to a single investor lease.
EDF is providing long-term operations and maintenance for the project. Financial details of the transactions were not disclosed.
Catalina Solar includes more than 1.1 million thin-film photovoltaic solar modules from First Solar and Solar Frontier. The project’s clean energy, provided to San Diego Gas & Electric, is estimated to power the equivalent of 35,000 homes annually and offset 250,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, improving overall air quality and contributing to California’s Renewable Portfolio Standards.
“EDF Renewable Energy has proven to be an excellent partner on Catalina Solar and other projects we have done together, a partner that shares our commitment to delivering reliable, productive and economic renewable energy projects,” said Kevin Walsh, manager director and head of power and renewable energy at GE Energy Financial Services, in prepared comments.