Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Calling All Squeegees

The Ontario Government has authorized the production of a new solar 'farm' in Sarnia. It also pledged to buy solar energy for the next 20 years. Optisolar is California based company with executive ties to Canadian oil companies. Four sections of farmland totaling 900 acres have been purchased for the solar panels which will be up and running before 2010. The site and all included costs of this venture will be just shy of 300 million.

Sarnia's 'Chemical Valley' hasn't exactly always given the impression of 'clean' energy and chemical production. But the Ontario Government has offered to buy the clean energy for 42 cents per kilowatt-hour which was an offer Optisolar couldn't refuse. Sarnia too, borders Detroit, allowing for easy distribution to consumers. It also being the southern most part of Canada, allows for the longest daylight hours.

Other countries such as Portugal and Germany have similar sites, but this is by far the biggest photovoltaic solar farm that North America has ever constructed.