The CLEAN LA Program is the nation’s largest solar rooftop program. The 150 Megawatt Solar Rooftop Program was proposed by the Los Angeles Business Council (LABC) and was adopted by the Los Angeles City Council and the LA DWP. Currently, most of L.A.’s renewable power is generated outside the L.A. basin and transmitted inefficiently to customers. By contrast, the CLEAN LA Solar program will incentivize clean-energy production within city limits by taking advantage of L.A.’s vast, underused rooftop space. The result will be more efficient power delivery and a reduction in the city’s reliance on energy produced by coal. Watch this video to learn more about the CLEAN LA Program:
How the 100MW Program works: The Board of Water and Power Commissioners approved the 100-megawatt CLEAN LA Solar Set Pricing Program as the first component of a 150- megawatt FiT Program. The program will be released in five allocations of 20 megawatts each. The remaining 50MW will be developed as a bundled project as a part of the LADWP’s Beacon Solar Project. More details on this tranche are below.
Applications for the 100MW set pricing program are reviewed based on their queue position on the Review Priority List. Eligible projects will be offered a standard 20-year contract that requires LADWP to purchase the solar power at a set price: Projects in LA City will be contracted at a rate starting at 17 cents per kilowatt-hour; projects in Owens Valley will be contracted at a rate of 14 cents per kilowatt-hour.
How the 50MW Bundled Program works: The LADWP expects to release the Requests for Proposal for the 50MW bundled Beacon Solar Project in May of 2013. This Bundled Program is located on the LADWP’s property in the city of Cantil, CA. Each developer participating in the Bundled Program within the Beacon Project will be required to reach installment milestones of one-third of their MW obligation by December 31, 2014, two-thirds of their MW obligation by December 31, 2015, and the total obligation by December 31, 2016.
Update on the first 20 MW tranche: In February of 2013, the LADWP opened bidding for the first 20 MW of the CLEAN LA Solar program and was met with strong enthusiasm from customers and solar power developers. Applications for over 107 megawatts (MW) of potential solar projects were submitted for an available 20MW, making the program oversubscribed by 500% in its first round. The applications submitted include 2 MWs of capacity for 22 smaller solar projects ranging from 30 kW to 150 kW, and 105 MWs for 76 larger projects that range from 151 kWh to 3 MW. These projects were dispersed throughout the City of Los Angeles as well as the Owens Valley, where LADWP provides electrical service to several local communities. Of the projects located in the City of LA, about 60% of the projects were located in the San Fernando Valley and the rest were distributed throughout the city.
Impact on local investment: We are already experiencing an economic impact in Los Angeles. One shining example can be found in the firm Solar Provider Group. This firm has announced plans to significantly expand its investment in this city by moving their global headquarters to Los Angeles. The company’s LA headquarters will serve as its base of operations as it evaluates additional investments throughout California and the Western U.S. Over the next year, their new office will hire roughly 30 additional employees in sales, engineering and construction, creating new, high-quality, local jobs. To date, Solar Provider Group has already invested more than $1 million in Los Angeles during the program’s demonstration phase, and plans to invest up to $50 million by the end of 2016, thus validating the argument that the CLEAN LA Solar program is indeed a stimulus to the local economy.
Economic impact: It is estimated that the full 150-megawatt program will produce 4,300 jobs over the next several years and garner over $500 million worth of private investment.
Workshops: The Los Angeles Business Council and LADWP will host various workshops for property owners, solar developers, workforce professionals, and financial institutions. The workshops will focus on how to participate in both the Fixed Rate and Bundled program and will allow for attendees to network with potential business partners. The first workshop will take place on Thursday, May 30, 2013 from 2:00-4:00pm in the San Fernando Valley and will be hosted by Los Angeles City Councilmember Mitchell Englander.