This is a new installation of almost three-quarters of a million (749,088 to be exact) solar panels, which was completed just last week in San Luis Obispo County at the California Valley Solar Ranch. The massive solar panel project is a 250 megawatt facility, which is the equivalent of around 50,000 home solar systems.
The project is actually made up of 10 large solar arrays over 4,700 acres, so “only” 1,500 acres are actually covered in solar panels (and buildings). The solar panels are on “horizontal single-axis trackers” that work to increase efficiency by constantly moving the panels to face directly towards the sun at all times of the day.
The developer of this massive project is SunPower, and the owner is NRG. The companies have emphasised that the project has managed to meet the “conservation objective for a range of species,” in the area. Some conservation groups had some concerns about the project’s development, especially in relation to the endangered San Joaquin kit fox and giant kangaroo rats. The developers had to agree to significant commitments to protect and preserve local species.