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Solar Millennium Receives Approvals for 1,000 Megawatts of U.S. Projects

Solar Millennium AG, the German maker of parabolic solar-power equipment, moved closer to starting construction on power plants in Nevada and California after U.S. authorities gave the projects a green light.

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar signed a right-of-way grant for Solar Millennium’s planned plant in Nevada’s Amargosa Valley and a committee of the California Energy Commission recommended granting approval for two solar-thermal generators, the company said in a statement on the Frankfurt exchange newswire.

Solar Millennium develops and produces parabolic-shaped collectors that concentrate sunlight using arrays of mirrors to make steam and turn electric turbines. The U.S. southwest and Spain, with some of the world’s highest solar radiation levels, are attracting the most investment in the technology, which is also called concentrated solar power.

The Nevada and California projects would have a combined capacity to produce 1,000 megawatts of electricity, about equivalent to one nuclear plant.

California regulators in July approved Southern California Edison Co.’s contract to buy two 242-megawatt facilities that will use parabolic-trough technology from Solar Millennium. The project, known as CA Solar 10, will be built near Blythe by Solar Trust of America LLC, a joint venture between Solar Millennium and German contractor Man Ferrostaal AG.

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