8minute Solar Nabs Its First Supply Deal with California Community Choice Aggregators

Large-scale developer 8minute Solar Energy said this week it had
signed itspower purchase agreements with two Northern California
community choice aggregators for a 250-megawatt solar project
located in the state, including 150-megawatt hours of energy
storage.

8minute, which develops solar and storage, has already inked
deals for projects with all of California’s large investor-owned
utilities, Pacific Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison
and San Diego Electric & Gas. But the project announced this
week is the developer’s first foray in the world of CCAs, which
have increasingly pulled customers and thus demand from
California’s traditional utilities.  

Offtakers Monterey Bay Community Power and Silicon Valley Clean
Energy have now worked together on seven renewables projects, five
of which are solar-plus-storage. The CCAs announced two solar and
storage projects built by Nextera and FirstSolar earlier this
month. In April the two CCAs published a joint request for proposal
for 2 million more megawatt-hours of energy delivered between 2021
and 2024, which also closed this week.

California’s CCAs — also called community choice energy
providers — have become a major driver of renewable procurement
in the state as large investor-owned utilities have already met
renewables commitments required by California’s renewable
portfolio standard. Under California law, utilities must get 33
percent of their electricity from renewable resources by the end of
2020.

Both MBCP and SVCE offer customers entirely “carbon-freeâ€
electricity, which includes renewables as well as sources like
large hydro. The 8minute project will serve between 7 and 8 percent
of MBCP’s total retail load, expected to hit 400,000 customers next
year, and 6.6 percent of SVCE’s load. 

MBCP, which competes with PG&E for customers, currently gets
34 percent of its power from renewable energy — mostly
geothermal, followed by solar — and plans to “meet or exceedâ€
California’s renewable portfolio standards, spokesperson Shelly
Whitworth told Greentech Media.

While CCAs generally work to win customers by undercutting
utility prices, MBCP also offers a 100 percent renewable
electricity option, divided between wind and solar, for its
customers willing to pay a premium. SVCE customers can choose
between 50 percent and 100 percent renewables. 

California’s crop of CCAs has so far signed more than 3.6
gigawatts of power purchase agreements serving more than 10 million
customers, according to CCA member trade group the California
Community Choice Association.

Source: FS – GreenTech Media
8minute Solar Nabs Its First Supply Deal with California
Community Choice Aggregators