Goldman Sachs activates 390MW solar, 561MWh storage in California


The renewable power division of Goldman Sachs announced it reached commercial operation of the Slate solar and energy storage project. The 390MW solar, 140.25MW/561MWh battery energy storage facility is one of the largest in the state. The project, which began development in 2015, was originally developed by Recurrent Energy, a subsidiary of PV manufacturer Canadian Solar.

The Kings County solar facility has five power purchase agreements (PPA) attached to California-based organizations. The Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), Stanford University, and the Power and Water Resources Authority (PWRPA), a publicly owned organization that serves major water purveyors for irrigation. PWRPA has energy demand that fluctuates from 20 to 120 MW from winter to summer consuming 290 to 520 GWH of energy annually to convey, treat, and recycle water for their growers and consumers.

The project includes 561MWh of four-hour duration lithium-ion battery energy storage systems.
Image: Goldman Sachs

Image: Goldman Sachs

Notably, Stanford University announced it recently achieved 100% renewable energy operations. The university is in pursuit of net zero emissions by 2050.

Also served by the project’s PPA are Central Coast Community Energy and Silicon Valley Clean Energy, both organizations that offer opt-in contracts for customers who desire a higher share of renewable energy generation attached to their electric bills.

“Slate is a landmark project that will help California meet its leading renewable energy targets. We started developing Slate in 2015, and we’re proud that this project was contracted as one of the first utility-scale solar and energy storage projects in the state, thanks to the forward-thinking leadership among the projects’ customers.” Dr. Shawn Qu, chairman and CEO of Canadian Solar.

The project is expected to generate power equivalent to 126,000 California homes, displacing roughly 369,310 metric tons of carbon annually in the process. Over the past year, the project employed 405 workers at peak construction, 90% of which were local King’s County residents. Skilled tradespeople from local unions were hired for the construction.

Goldman Sachs’ renewable team was established in 2017 and has now sponsored more than 2.6GW of capacity across 850 solar and storage projects in 27 states.

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