ACCIONA Energy became a pioneer in 2007 when it grid connected the Nevada Solar One, a 64 MW parabolic cylinder facility located in the Nevada Desert (USA). It became the first company in the world to set up a CSP plant after the projects carried out in California between 1985 and 1991, leading to the rebirth of this renewable technology.
Since then, it has installed (also under its ownership) five more plants, all of them in Spain, with total capacity of 249.80 MW. The company has also installed a 1 MW plant in Saguaro (Arizona, USA) for the utility company Arizona Public Service (APS). The five Spanish plants represent an overall investment of more than 1.2 billion euros, creating 1,750 jobs in the construction phase and 150 permanent jobs in the operational phase. They produce clean energy equivalent to the consumption of more than 200,000 homes, avoiding the emission of over half a million metric tons of C02 to the atmosphere.
ACCIONA Energy also has six CSP plants in service with a total nominal capacity of 314 MW. These are Nevada Solar One (Nevada, USA), with 64 MW, and Alvarado (Badajoz), Majadas (Cáceres), Palma del Río II, Palma del Río I (Córdoba) and Orellana (Badajoz), all of them with a capacity of 50 MW. ACCIONA was the first Spanish company to grid connect a CSP plant with parabolic cylinders (Nevada Solar One, 1997). Later on, and in just four years (2009-2013) it overcame the challenge of building four plants with the same technology in Spain capable of covering the demand for electricity of 130,000 homes.
Concentrating solar power (CSP) technology has shown its capacity to generate a high level of power. In 2016, the six CSP plants that ACCIONA owns and operates generated 540 gigawatt-hours of clean energy from the sun’s rays, according to provisional data. This figure is equivalent to the electricity consumption of more than 150,000 homes, and avoids the emission of around 521,000 metric tons of CO2 to the atmosphere from coal-fired power stations and a cleaning effect on the air equivalent to the photosynthesis of around 25 million trees.
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