SunPower agrees to cease operations after 50 years

November 2, 2011

SunPower Corp. settled a dispute with a group of litigants battling against its San Luis Obispo County solar project by agreeing to close the plant down after 50 years of operation.

The 250-megawatt proposed California Valley Solar Ranch plant will be decommissioned and the area restored to its natural state as part of the lawsuit settlement, SunPower said today in a statement.

The litigants, North County Watch and Carrizo Commons, had argued that the facility would have negative impacts on the area’s aesthetics, air quality, biological resources, noise, traffic, greenhouse gas emissions and agricultural resources.

In September, the Energy Department finalized a $1.24 billion loan guarantee to the SunPower Corp. to help finance construction of the California Valley Solar Ranch. Shortly after the loan guarantee closed on Sept. 30, SunPower sold the project to NRG Energy Inc.


9 Comments

  1. Maxfusion says:

    Yet another green weenie project bites the dust. Drill baby drill.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

  2. Justin says:

    This is just so stupid. They act like it’s Diablo. I’m gonna wish myself to be a rattle snake that lives in the shade of a solar panel on the Carrizo Plains. I’ll venture out and bite the leg of every person that complains about my new home.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

  3. BeenThereDoneThat says:

    Here’s the problem I have with people opposed to this. People go around WANTING solar as an option to fossil fuel. Fair enogh. So you need a LOT of land to do a commercial setup. So if you don’t put out in the boondocks (i.e. desert type areas) then where? National parks with redwoods? By the ocean? This is another of the typical things you will find, that no matter what you do, or where you propose to do something (like this) there will ALWAYS be someone to tell you what you are doing wrong. I would love to hear where they think you should put one.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

    • easymoney says:

      Love this post. The irony of the left is so thick you can cut it with a knife.
      All this talk from over the decades about green energy and renewable power sounds great on paper, until it comes down to a desolate spot near you…
      Not one new power plant has been built in CA in decades and any mention of hydro electric is immediately shut down.
      How is this environmentally friendly thesis supposed to move forward? Build it in another state?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 4

      • BeenThereDoneThat says:

        Well of course easymoney you and I know what the answer is to where to put them. N.I.M.B.Y.!! ;-)

        Like you said about how it looks on paper, till the point of getting to brass tacks. I am so feed up with listening to all the carping over the years of we need, we need and then here we are and this isn’t good enough, out in the middle of B.F.E. (Bum, you know what, Egypt)

        One last on the article. They talk about returning the area and all the different things. The one that is the best is the area’s aesthetics. Look at the back ground!! There isn’t a stick of green anywhere! I wonder what aesthetics baron dirt has!??? I have been through California Valley. Not much there. No wonder why so many meth heads like the place. You would have to be stoned out of your mind to want to live there.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

  4. whatisup says:

    What is this story saying? On one hand there is a discussion of a 50 year old Sun Power solar project that is being shut down. (Was it really built in the early 1960s?)

    Next in the story is information about a $1.24 billion loan guarantee to construct a new solar plant and Sun Power has now sold this new solar plant to be constructed to NRG Energy.

    There is no explanation of how the two solar plants are connected. Did Sun Power agree to shut down a 50 year old solar plant to build the new $1.24 billion plant and avoid litigation trying to prevent the new plant from being built, i.e., the new $1.24 billion solar plant is moving forward?

    And again, was the existing Sun Power Solar Plant really built in 1961 and how many megawatts is it?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3

    • LittleAcorn says:

      They are saying that 50 years from now the plant that is being built will be decommissioned and the land returned to its original condition.

      If you ask me, after 50 years there will be no point in trying to restore the land to the original condition. Would it not be better to keep it in operation by updating and replacing components that degrade over time?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  5. smartmouth says:

    We shall see what we shall see . . .

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  6. tojofay says:

    Here comes the sun…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

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