Renewable energy and natural gas provider Sempra U.S. Gas & Power is planning a 100-megawatt (MW) expansion of its Mesquite Solar complex in Arlington, Arizona, scheduled to begin this fall.Dubbed Mesquite Solar 2, the expansion will produce enough power for 45,000 homes when completed in late 2016. The multi-phase project will create hundreds of construction jobs and is expected to employ approximately 600 workers at its peak. Sempra already has sold the expansion's output to Southern California Edison under a 20-year agreement. The contract, subject to approval by the California Public Utilities Commission.
"We are pleased to support Southern California Edison's commitment to diversify its growing renewable energy portfolio through the development of Mesquite Solar 2," Kevin C. Sagara, president of renewables for Sempra U.S. Gas & Power, said. "The expansion of our landmark Mesquite Solar complex reflects the progressive vision and leadership by the state of Arizona and Maricopa County, and we look forward to delivering a new supply of clean, emission-free energy to California consumers."
The 4,000-acre Mesquite Solar site is among the nation’s largest photovoltaic solar facilities. Upon completion of this latest expansion project, the complex's three phases are expected to produce a total of 400 MW.
"Mesquite Solar 2 represents quality jobs for Arizona residents, as well as an economic boost to local businesses," Maricopa County supervisor Clint Hickman said. "I look forward to seeing this new phase of Mesquite Solar complex break ground later this year."
By the end of 2016, the combined solar power portfolio of projects jointly owned by Sempra U.S. Gas & Power in Arizona and Nevada is expected to grow to more than 1,000 MW.