California’s push to increase renewable energy’s share of the power market is showing results. Construction of the first phase of a new 400-MW solar power project in the California desert will begin in late 2009 once a contractor is named. Photo: Brightsource Energy Inc. Flat mirrors mean lower cost for BrightSource’s solar plant, piloted in Israel’s Negev Desert. Oakland, Calif.-based BrightSource Energy Inc. this year has signed contracts with Rosemead, Calif.-based Southern California Edison Co. and San Francisco-based Pacific Gas & Electric Co. for a total of 2,200 MW of power from seven planned solar plants at locations in California
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.