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Tenaska closes refinancing for 150MW solar project in Calfornia

CTBR Staff Writer Published 07 September 2017

Omaha, Nebraska-based energy company Tenaska has completed refinancing of $400m for its 150MW Tenaska Imperial Solar Energy Center West project.

The solar plant started its commercial operations in September last year and is located near Seeley in California’s Imperial Valley. The solar plant can produce enough energy to meet power needs of about 55,000 homes.

For the solar plant, Tenaska has entered into a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E).

When the solar plant was first financed during its construction phase back in 2014, it was considered as one of the largest solar facilities to have been financed from a commercial bank.

The present refinancing was supported by Morgan Stanley, MUFG Securities America and BNP Paribas Securities acting as the co-placement agents for the notes.

The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ and BNP Paribas have also provided letters-of-credit and working capital facilities.

Tenaska chief financial officer Greg Van Dyke said: "Tenaska Imperial West continues to be a successful project, and the market responded favorably.

"This speaks to the financial strength of the project and to Tenaska's reputation in the industry."

The Tenaska Imperial Solar Energy Center West is one of the two utility-scale solar projects that are owned by one of Tenaska’s associate companies.

First Solar was contracted for the construction of the project and it will also act as the long-term plant operator. The solar plant consists of 1.8 million of First Solar’s PV modules.

The other project, the Tenaska Imperial Solar Energy Center South has a capacity to produce up to 150MW of clean electricity. This energy from the plant is also supplied to SDG&E under a 25-year PPA.

Image: Tenaska completes debt refinancing on its 150MW solar plant in California. Photo: Courtesy of Tenaska Inc.