Imperial County’s largest solar project has a new owner.
The 709-megawatt Imperial Valley Solar project planned for south of Plaster City has been sold to AES Solar, a joint venture between AES Corp. and Riverstone Holdings.
AES Solar representatives did not return calls by press time. However, the change was not unexpected in Imperial County, said Andy Horne, deputy county executive officer for natural resources. There had been talk for awhile of the possible sale, and another Tessera project had been sold recently.
With the new company, some parts of the project are rumored to be changing, he said. The site may differ from what was originally proposed, or the company could decide to use a different solar dish.
“There’s a lot of speculation going on,” Horne said. “We’re hopeful that this means the project will go forward.”
Rumored new solar dishes could be something that the Valley has seen before with photovoltaic dishes. AES Solar owns and operates a growing fleet of photovoltaic projects in Europe, according to its Web site.
Photovoltaic uses the sunlight to make energy, while the project’s original technology, Stirling Energy’s SunCatchers, use heat to produce power.
The Imperial Valley Solar project has faced problems in the form of a lawsuit with the Quechan tribe recently. A hold was put on construction in December, but it was not known whether the decision prompted Tessera Solar to sell the project.
No reason for selling had been given in the statement from Tessera Solar.
Staff Writer Elizabeth Varin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 760-337-3441.