Historic Partnership with LADWP to Provide Storable, Renewable and Affordable Power to People Throughout LA Metro
Los Angeles —November 6, 2019— The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), the largest municipal utility in the United States, has announced a groundbreaking new partnership with 8minute Solar Energy, LLC to provide storable, renewable, and affordable power to households throughout Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. The project, which provides consumers with the lowest combined solar and storage prices on record, offers a glimpse of the future—with zero-carbon sources providing lower-cost energy than fossil fuels for the first time in history.
As the country’s largest independent solar and storage powerplant development company, 8minute will build a massive new state-of-the-art facility—Eland Solar & Storage Center—to serve the needs of the LADWP. The Eland will deliver up to 400MW of clean energy to the grid, with the additional capability of storing up to 300MW/1200 MWh (megawatt hours), dispatchable for use when the sun is not shining (typically in the evening and nighttime hours, when the load is still high).
Located 70 miles north of Los Angeles on more than 2,000 acres of barren desert—much of which was previously disturbed—Eland will be built in two phases, with operations starting in 2022 and reaching full operational capabilities in 2023. When completed, the project will be the largest municipal photovoltaic operation in the world. Due to the partnership’s unprecedented scale, 8minute is able to provide LADWP with the lowest solar energy prices on record in the U.S.: less than 2 cents per kWh. Utilizing existing transmission infrastructure to an unprecedented extent for solar power plants allows for the rapid expansion of clean energy projects—while saving the consumers money.
“This is what the future of energy looks like,” said Dr. Tom Buttgenbach, President and CEO of 8minute, “and we’re thrilled to be co-creating that future in collaboration with our fellow innovators at LADWP and the labor community. Together, thanks to Eland’s advanced storage and dispatch capabilities, we’re working to dispel misconceptions about the availability, reliability, and long-term viability of clean solar power. It’s a game-changer for the renewable energy industry, and a huge win for California.
The Eland Solar & Storage Center has been engineered by 8minute to provide fully dispatchable power under control of the LADWP to meet its customers’ demands with reliable and cost-effective power—a capability previously reserved for large fossil fuel power plants. Eland’s ability to provide fully dispatchable power for less than the traditional cost of fossil fuels effectively positions solar PV as an attractive candidate to be the primary source of California’s 100% clean energy future.
When the Eland cluster comes online in 2023, 8minute will be the largest provider of clean energy to Los Angeles—supplying enough clean power for more than a million people throughout LA County. With a projected annual production capacity of more than 1.7 billion kWh, Eland will reduce carbon emissions by nearly 1.2 million metric tons each year—a change that is equivalent to taking nearly 150,000 cars off the streets. The project’s development and construction is expected to create more than 700 new jobs during the peak of construction.