Central Coast Community Energy and Silicon Valley Clean Energy Announce 100 MW Rabbitbrush Solar and Storage Project Success
November 30, 2022
Facility delivers clean, reliable, and affordable energy to power 40,000 homes annually
ROSAMOND, Calif., Nov. 30, 2022 – Today Central Coast Community Energy (CCCE) and Silicon Valley Clean Energy (SVCE) celebrated Rabbitbrush – a 100 megawatt (MW) solar, 20 MW/50 megawatt hour battery storage project developed by Leeward Renewable Energy in Kern County. Rabbitbrush achieved commercial operation in October 2022.
The project is expected to produce enough electricity to power about 40,000 homes annually in California, offsetting carbon emissions by approximately 48,000 metric tons each year — the equivalent of removing 10,343 cars from the road. The battery storage facility provides a reliable and cost-effective means of storing renewable energy that can be dispatched during peak hours, increasing grid resiliency and reducing carbon emissions.
“The Rabbitbrush project is Central Coast Community Energy’s second solar-plus-storage power purchase agreement to come online this year,” said Rob Shaw, Chief Operating Officer of Central Coast Community Energy. “Coupling solar generation with battery storage allows us to move closer to a decarbonized energy grid and statewide emission-reduction goals. CCCE is committed to investing in innovation while delivering reliable energy to our customers.”
“Rabbitbrush helps Silicon Valley Clean Energy deliver on its commitment to provide clean, affordable, and reliable electricity,” said Monica Padilla, SVCE Chief Operating Officer and Director of Power Resources. “As SVCE communities shift away from fossil fuels to electrify homes and buildings, new projects like Rabbitbrush that add carbon-free capacity and reliability to the grid are key.”
SVCE receives 40 MW of solar and 8 MW/20 MWh of battery storage. CCCE receives 60MW of solar and 12 MW/30 MWh of battery storage. The contract term for both community choice energy providers is 15 years.
Leeward Renewable Energy contributed significant economic and job benefits to Kern County during the construction of the Rabbitbrush project, including hundreds of thousands of dollars through community donations and project fees that fund critical public services. Additionally, the project generated significant sales and property tax benefits, and created 380 union jobs during peak construction.
This Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) is a result of the Request for Offers CCCE and SVCE issued jointly in 2019. CCCE and SVCE have to date signed 11 joint PPAs, totaling 1,313 MW of clean energy and 316 MW of storage. Both agencies have set goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and shift to clean, renewable energy sources that are more ambitious than those set at the state and federal levels. Four of the 11 projects under contract began operations in 2022. Six more are expected to come online in 2023, placing CCCE and SVCE well ahead of Renewable Portfolio Standards requiring 44% of electricity sold by utility providers be classified as renewable by 2024.
About Central Coast Community Energy
Central Coast Community Energy is a public agency that sources competitively priced electricity from clean and renewable energy resources. CCCE is locally controlled and governed by board members who represent each community served by the agency. Revenue generated by CCCE stays local and helps keep electricity rates affordable for customers, while also funding innovative energy programs designed to lower greenhouse gas emissions and stimulate economic development. CCCE serves 436,000 customers throughout the Central Coast, including residential, commercial, and agricultural customers in communities located within Monterey, San Benito, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Santa Cruz counties. Learn more at 3CEnergy.org and on social media, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @3CEnergy.
About Silicon Valley Clean Energy
Silicon Valley Clean Energy is a not-for-profit, community-owned agency providing clean electricity from renewable and carbon-free sources to more than 270,000 residential and commercial customers in 13 Santa Clara County jurisdictions. As a public agency, net revenues are returned to the community to keep rates competitive and promote clean energy programs. Silicon Valley Clean Energy is advancing innovative solutions to fight climate change by decarbonizing the grid, transportation, and buildings. Learn more at SVCleanEnergy.org.
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