Desert Community Energy and Vesper Energy Announce 20-Year Solar + Battery Storage Power Purchase Agreement
PALM SPRINGS, CA – May 10, 2021 – Desert Community Energy (DCE) and Vesper Energy jointly announce that they have entered into a 20-year power purchase agreement for solar energy and battery storage. DCE will purchase all of the energy produced from the Deer Creek 50 MW Solar + 200 MWh Storage project.
This is the first solar plus battery storage contract entered into by DCE. The agreement will help DCE meet a primary goal of providing carbon-free energy to its customers in the City of Palm Springs while helping the State fight climate change and meet the mandate that 100 percent of California’s electricity come from carbon-free resources by 2045. DCE also recently signed three contracts for wind energy produced in Palm Springs.
The Deer Creek Solar + Storage project will generate nearly 190,000 MWh annually in its first year of operation, which is the equivalent of powering 15,500 homes with 100% carbon-free electricity. The battery storage component will allow for the solar power to be stored and discharged at the time the power is most needed by the grid, such as during the evening peak, providing much needed reliability and solar integration to the grid as well as significant financial value to DCE.
The Deer Creek Solar + Storage project is scheduled to begin construction in 2022 and completed in 2023. The project is located on 378 acres of land in Tulare County.
Palm Springs Councilmember and Chair of DCE, Geoff Kors said, “We are excited that this power purchase agreement with Vesper Energy will help lock-in a significant portion of our energy costs providing rate certainty and saving our residents and businesses $13-$50 million in cost savings.”
“We are very pleased to be working with Desert Community Energy on this innovative project to supply clean, carbon-free energy to their customers for decades to come,” said Vesper Energy CEO, Craig Carson. “We are grateful for the opportunity to develop projects that help the state make strides towards its ambitious renewable energy goals.”
The City of Palm Springs has prioritized the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and DCE’s investment into the Deer Creek Solar + Storage project will help the city continue to improve air quality and achieve its climate action goals. DCE’s carbon free customers in Palm Springs have reduced greenhouse gas emissions the equivalent of taking 20,000 cars off the road.
About DCE: DCE is a Community Choice Energy Program (also known as “Community Choice Aggregation”) made possible by a not-for-profit partnership between the cities of Palm Springs, Cathedral City and Palm Desert and certified by the California Public Utilities Commission. Community Choice Energy programs allow communities to source their own electricity and offer customers the choice to buy cleaner electricity at competitive rates, reducing greenhouse gases through development of a robust renewable energy infrastructure. Desert Community Energy (DCE) launched in the City of Palm Springs in April 2020 and offers two plans: the 100% Carbon Free plan and the Desert Saver plan which is the lowest cost option available for electricity in the city. For more information about DCE, visit DesertCommunityEnergy.org or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
About Vesper: Vesper Energy is a North American developer, owner and operator of utility-scale renewable energy and energy storage assets. It has commercialized over 680 MW of solar projects in the U.S., and has an existing 3 GW solar and 2.5 GWh energy storage development pipeline. Vesper Energy provides innovative solutions to meet today’s energy challenges through the creation of high quality, high value utility-scale renewable energy and energy storage assets that contribute to a sustainable, decarbonized future. Vesper Energy started as Lendlease Energy Development in 2015 and rebranded as Vesper Energy in 2020, after Magnetar Capital acquired majority ownership.
Katie Barrows | Desert Community Energy
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