Constellation Energy, Baltimore, recently announced it will support the development of commercial photovoltaic (PV) power systems with a $90 million solar capital commitment. To maximize the value of government renewable incentives, the $90 million set-aside will be available for customer-sited solar installations of 500kW or larger that begin construction before mid-year 2010.

The capital commitment enables Constellation Energy to finance, design, construct, and own solar installations for customers and supply the power generated onsite to the customer. This structure enables customers to deploy onsite solar and meet sustainability goals without incurring upfront costs. Approximately $18 million of the capital commitment has already been committed to projects soon to begin development in Maryland and New Jersey.

Constellation Energy has committed to expanding solar project development over the next several years. The company currently has approximately 25MW of solar power systems installed or under way in the United States., ranging from customer-sited rooftop installations to a 17.1-MW large-scale project in Emmitsburg, Md., that will be among the largest in the nation.

Constellation Energy has developed PV installations for retailers, manufacturers, government facilities, and universities nationwide, with a focus on projects in Maryland, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and California where solar incentives and credits make development particularly attractive for customers financially. Solar renewable energy credits (SREC), which are granted to solar projects for every megawatt-hour of electricity produced, help make onsite solar projects economically attractive. With SREC values scheduled to decline over time as states require the development of more solar generation, the next several months represent the optimal time to begin construction of onsite solar with the strongest project economics.

Structured correctly, today's PV power systems can generate electricity that is priced at or below the cost of power from the grid. Qualifying projects of 500kW generally require at least 100,000 sq ft of roof space or 2 acres of open ground. Organizations interested in developing solar projects can contact Constellation Energy at Sustainable-Solutions@constellation.com or 1-877-427-2005.

Source: Constellation Energy