Under Project Amp, solar systems will be installed on industrial buildings across the US … and the energy will go straight to the grid, rather than just powering those buildings.
Supported by funding from the 2009 stimulus bill, the Amp Project calls for 733 megawatts (MW) of solar PV installations, enough to power 100,000 homes and nearly equal to the total amount of PV installed in the U.S. in 2010. It will create at least 1000 solar jobs over four years.
This is an example of the power of small, distributed solar; the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced it would further support it through a partial loan guarantee for a $1.4 billion loan.
Project Amp will be spread over 750 rooftops owned and managed by real estate firm Prologis, known for its leadership in green building.
NRG Energy is the lead investor for the first phase of the project, which includes a 15.4 MW installation in Southern California. Phase 1 will use at least 90% U.S. sourced components and the electricity will be sold to Southern California Edison. Additional installations will be built in up to 28 states and the District of Columbia.
Bank of America will provide $1.4 billion in financing for the $2.6 billion project.
"This unprecedented solar project will not only produce clean, renewable energy to power the grid in states across the country, but it will help us meet the SunShot goal of achieving cost competitive solar power with other forms of energy by the end of the decade," says DOE Secretary Chu. "In addition, Project Amp will create at least a thousand jobs across the U.S. and increase our global competitiveness in the clean energy race."
DOE’s Title XVII Section 1703 and Section 1705 loan guarantee programs support deployment of commercial technologies along with innovative technologies that avoid, reduce, or sequester greenhouse gas emissions, and the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing (ATVM) loan program supports development of advanced vehicle technologies.
DOE has issued loans, loan guarantees or offered conditional commitments for loan guarantees totaling over $33 billion to support 37 clean energy projects across the U.S. The program’s 20 generation projects produce enough power for over two million homes.
Including Project Amp, the program has reserved or committed to over $12 billion in loan guarantees for solar projects. DOE has also committed financing to support numerous other projects, such as three geothermal projects and the world’s largest wind farm. See the Loan Programs Office.
Largest Rooftop Solar System Under Construction
Gloucester Marine Terminal on the Delaware River in New Jersey will soon be home to the largest rooftop solar installation in North America.
The facility, which is owned by Holt Logistics Corp., is partnering with SunPower Corp. (Nasdaq: SPWRA, SPWRB) to build a 9 megawatts (MW) system on 1.1 million square feet of rooftop space on the Terminal’s refrigerated warehouse.
The $42 million installation will generate nearly 80% of the Terminal’s electricity.
Known as Riverside Renewable Energy, LLC, the project is privately funded and will be nearly twice as large as any previous rooftop solar installation in New Jersey, which is now the national leader in the development of commercial solar installations after California.
The installation will include about 27,500 photovoltaic rooftop solar panels — roughly enough to power 1,500 homes.
Sun Power is installing its T5 Solar Roof Tile system, a non-penetrating rooftop product that combines a high-efficiency solar panel, frame and mounting system into a single, pre-engineered unit.
Construction is underway and should be completed by the fall.
According to estimates provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the system is expected to offset more than 9,500 tons of carbon dioxide, approximately the same amount that would be offset by planting 400,000 trees or removing 1,700 cars from the road.
The Riverside project will make use of federal Investment Tax Credits, tax incentives that are spurring development of green energy sources nationwide; and New Jersey Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs) created through the New Jersey Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). Riverside will sell the SRECs associated with the system.