California OKs world's largest CSP project

The California Energy Commission announced that it had unanimously granted approval for a 1 gigawatt concentrated solar power plant to be built in Blythe, California. The project will cover an enormous expanse of 7,000 acres, dividing power generation amongs 4 250-megawatt power plants. That means it is capable of producing enough electricity to power roughly 300,000 homes


Despite the obvious benefits, many have warned that there will be environmental impacts to the Blythe area. A statement from the California Energy commission said that mitigation measures would not be enough to override the impacts to the desert, however "the benefits of the project would justify a legal override of those impacts. In addition, the committee determined the project complies with all other applicable laws, ordinances, regulations, and standards."

Only one more obstacle remains -- a right of way grant from the Bureau of Land Management. Once the grant is awarded, the project is expected to break ground as early as the end of this year.