US power company AES Corp (NYSE:AES) on Wednesday said it has acquired the largest permitted solar-plus-storage project in the US, the 2-GW Bellefield scheme, in Kern County, California, from its developer, Avantus.
The late-stage development project has two phases, each including 500 MW of solar and up to 500 MW of four-hour duration battery energy storage. They are expected to become operational in 2025 and 2026, respectively.
The first phase has a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) to supply hourly, clean power to an existing AES corporate customer, the company said. It expects to contract the second phase capacity by the end of 2023.
"With the addition of Bellefield phase one, our signed PPA backlog grows to more than 12 GW, which represents growth of more than 80% from our current installed renewable generation fleet,” AES president and chief executive Andres Gluski pointed out. Most of this backlog is expected to come online over the next two years, he added.
AES has been ranked by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) as the top developer for signing corporate PPAs in 2021 and 2022.