California became the first state to generate more than 5% of its electricity from utility solar, according a new report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).
California’s utility-scale (1 megawatt or larger) solar plants generated a record 9.9 million mega watt hours (MWh) of electricity in 2014, an increase of 6.1 million MWh from 2013. California’s utility-scale solar production in 2014 was more than three times the output of the next-highest state, Arizona, and more than all other states combined, according to the EIA.
Last year, several large solar power plants were phased into operation in the Golden State. Those plants include the Topaz and Desert Sunlight 550MW solar photovoltaic plants, the 377MW Ivanpah plant and the 250MW Genesis solar thermal plant. In total, nearly 1,900MW of new utility-scale solar capacity was added, bringing the state’s utility-scale capacity for all solar technologies to 5,400MW by the end of 2014 — enough new capacity to power more than 1.05 million typical households.
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