NRG Energy Inc. (NYSE: NRG) and its partners Prologis (NYSE: PLD) and Bank of America Corporation (NYSE: BAC) have been awarded a loan guarantee from the United States Department of Energy to build the largest rooftop solar project in the world.
As part of its SunShot Initiative, the DOE will provide a partial loan guarantee (80%) of US$1.4 billionto support Project Amp. The distributed solar power project will install solar panels on the roofs of 750 industrial buildings in 28 states over the next four years.
When complete, the combined installed rooftop solar systems willgenerate an estimated 733 MW of renewable energy. One of the bigdifferences between Project Amp and other rooftop solar projects is that all of the electricity generated will be fed directly to the electricgrid as opposed to powering the building that is housing the solarpanels.
NRG Energy will serve as lead investor for the project’s first phasewhich will begin with a 15 MW installation in Southern California.Southern California Edison has agreed to purchase the energy generatedfrom this first installation through a long term power purchaseagreement. In addition to providing the rooftops needed for Project Amp, Prologis, which is one of the nation’s leading owner and developers ofindustrial real estate, will serve as the project’s developer andconstruction manager.
According to NRG Energy [pdf], the US$2.6 billion project is expected to create 10,000 full-year jobs, generate enough energy to power 100,000 homes, and reduce the nation’scarbon footprint 580,000 tons a year.
"This unprecedented solar project will not only produce clean,renewable energy to power the grid in states across the country, but itwill help us meet the SunShot goal of achieving cost competitive solarpower with other forms of energy by the end of the decade," said EnergySecretary Steven Chu.
He continued, "In addition, Project Amp will create at least athousand jobs across the U.S. and increase our global competitiveness in the clean energy race."