U.S. Navy Invests in Inland Solar

Keith Kohl

Written By Keith Kohl

Posted September 2, 2015

Last week, we told you about the new form of hydropower gaining momentum in Hawaii: the ocean thermal energy conversion system. The U.S. Navy plans to invest in future builds of these systems to help power its onshore bases.

Now, a tried-and-true renewable energy source is getting funding from the military organization as well: solar power.

You see, Sempra U.S. Gas and Power operates the Mesquite solar farm, about 40 miles outside of Phoenix, Arizona. The farm already has a few advantages over other large solar panel systems, including not requiring water to operateMesquite Solar.

The project’s first building phase was completed in 2012, and it is expected to be online and producing energy by next year.

But before that happens, there are some expansions in the works.

The U.S. Navy has once again thrown in its lot with a large-scale renewable source: the organization will invest in the solar farm, which will provide about 210 megawatts of power to 14 Navy and Marine Corps sites.

The expansions will bring the farm’s capacity to an estimated 700 megawatts, and save the Navy “at least” $90 million in the 25 years it will be contracted.

When completed, the Mesquite solar farm will be the largest solar farm in the world.

Several global trends brought on this new round of expansions and funding, including a Congress-mandated goal for the Department of Defense to get at least 25% of its energy from renewable sources by 2025.

The drop in renewable technology prices is another factor. Renewable sources aren’t “cost outliers” as compared to fossil fuels anymore according to a Bloomberg report.

And that’s not the end of the road for solar growth, either. India is looking to make an even larger solar farm in the state of Madhya Pradesh with a capacity of 750 megawatts. However, this project won’t be online until 2017 at the soonest.

Global competition is a good sign for this renewable energy source: as the world makes the move to cleaner energy, the solar markets will see some major growth.

To continue reading…

Click here to read the Huffington Post article.

Until next time,

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Keith Kohl

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A true insider in the technology and energy markets, Keith’s research has helped everyday investors capitalize from the rapid adoption of new technology trends and energy transitions. Keith connects with hundreds of thousands of readers as the Managing Editor of Energy & Capital, as well as the investment director of Angel Publishing’s Energy Investor and Technology and Opportunity.

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