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Californian solar project site of First Solar’s 10 millionth utility solar module

Thin-film photovoltaic company First Solar, Inc. installed its 10 millionth solar photovoltaic module in a utility-scale power project at the Desert Sunlight Solar Farm in California.

Upon completion in 2015, the 550-megawatt Desert Sunlight Solar Farm will be one of the largest photovoltaic solar projects in the world.

The project, owned by NextEra Energy Resources and GE Energy Financial Services, will use First Solar's cadmium telluride thin film solar modules to provide power for around 160,000 Californian homes and displace 300,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide a year.

The Desert Sunlight Solar Farm is located on federal land near the community of Desert Center in Riverside County.

The power from project will be sold under two long-term power purchase agreements with Southern California Edison (250 MW) and Pacific Gas and Electric Company (300 MW)

Construction in Desert Sunlight began in September 2011, after it received a loan guarantee of $1.46 billion from the Department of Energy.

The project is creating an average of 400 construction jobs and is providing an estimated $336 million in indirect local economic benefits to Riverside County. The project is also expected to contribute approximately $27 million in sales and property tax revenues to the county.

The Desert Sunlight project is just one part of First Solar's 2.7 gigawatt utility-scale solar project pipeline in North America. First Solar is also constructing the 550 MW Topaz project in San Luis Obispo County in California.

The thin-film company has cumulatively produced almost 80 million modules, representing a peak generating capacity of more than 6 GW – enough to power 3 million homes and displace over 4 million tons of carbon dioxide a year. – EcoSeed Staff

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