LOS ANGELES, April 3 BrightSource Energy Inc on
Wednesday shelved a major solar power project in California for
the second time this year.
In a document filed with the California Energy Commission,
BrightSource said it "has determined there is a need to suspend"
its application to permit the 500 megawatt Hidden Hills solar
thermal power project until further notice.
The company did not give a reason for the suspension, and
company officials were not immediately available for comment.
BrightSource, based in Oakland, California, said it will
continue to evaluate the project, which was to be located in
Inyo County near the Nevada border.
In January, BrightSource suspended its 500 MW Rio Mesa
project in Riverside County, California after multiple delays in
the permitting process.
Late last year, CEC staff said the Hidden Hills project
would have "significant" impact on the environment, adding that
the use of photovoltaic solar panels "would be environmentally
superior" to BrightSource's solar thermal technology.
BrightSource disputed those claims at recent hearings, and
the CEC was expected to issue a final decision on the project
later this year.
BrightSource, which canceled a planned initial public
offering last year, in March said Spain's Abengoa would
become a partner in its 500 MW Palen project in California. That
project is awaiting regulatory approval.
BrightSource is more than 20 percent owned by French power
equipment maker Alstom SA. Other investors include
VantagePoint Capital Partners, DBL Investors, Goldman Sachs Inc
, Chevron Technology Ventures and BP Ventures