SDG&E's plans to develop solar facilities approved

By City News Service

State utility regulators Thursday approved San Diego Gas & Electric’s plans to develop up to 100 megawatts of solar power facilities.

The California Public Utilities Commission’s decision authorizes SDG&E to spend up to $100 million to install small photovoltaic systems, ranging from 1-5 megawatts in size, for a total of 26 megawatts on properties it owns.

The solar panels would be installed in open areas, parking lots and on commercial buildings.

SDG&E also was approved to purchase 74 megawatts of solar power from independent producers.

According to the CPUC, the five-year program will help SDG&E meet its renewable energy benchmarks.

The CPUC’s decision also clears the way for California’s two other major utilities - Pacific Gas and Electric Co. and Southern California Edison - to move ahead with their own plans to install small-scale solar generating facilities.