Distributed Energy Resources

City Council OKs LADWP solar plus storage project PPAs

The Los Angeles City Council on Nov. 6 approved power purchase agreements for the Eland Solar and Storage Center, which will be the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s first utility-scale, integrated solar and battery project engineered to provide fully dispatchable power to customers in the evening and night time hours.

Located on 2,650 acres in Kern County, California, the project will include two large-scale solar facilities that will capture 400 megawatts of solar energy and store up to 1,200 megawatt-hours of energy — all of which can be distributed to meet peak demand.

The project will help to reduce reliance on natural gas when renewable energy is unavailable.  

“Eland Solar and Storage Center will offer reliable, cost-competitive energy as we expand solar and other renewable resources to meet our aggressive climate change goals,” said LADWP General Manager Martin Adams. “Among other benefits, the project will bridge the gap between day and night, dramatically increasing the operational value of the project.”

The unanimous vote from the City Council approved two PPAs with 8minute Solar Energy to develop the project and begin commercial operation no later than December 31, 2023. The contract will cost less than $5 per year for each LADWP customer.

Currently, LADWP receives 32% of its energy from renewable sources, and the Eland Solar and Storage Center will increase that number by up to 7.1%.

The joint clean energy investment with Glendale Water and Power, which will receive 12.5% of the total solar and battery storage, will be administered through the Southern California Public Power Authority.

The office of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said that the Eland project was selected out of a pool of 130 proposals because of the project’s scope and competitive price, which includes a fixed cost of less than 2 cents per kilowatt-hour for solar power, marking the lowest price offered in U.S. history.

The city council vote was the final approval needed for the project, Garcetti's office said.

8minute Solar Energy will cover all costs associated with the development, maintenance, and operation of the facility.

Garcetti’s office said that the Eland Solar and Storage Center will help Los Angeles reach 55% renewable energy by 2025, 80% renewable energy by 2036, and 100% renewable energy by 2045.