A recently-unveiled solar farm at Edwards Air Force Base in California represents the largest public-private partnership in Defense Department history.
The 1.3 GW project was built in collaboration with Terra-Gen as a result of the Edwards Solar Enhance Use Lease Project. The project, which features more than 2 million panels, is the largest project of its kind in U.S. Air Force history.
“The Air Force needs resiliency, reliability and readiness with our energy systems,” Brig. Gen. William H. Kale III, Commander, Air Force Civil Engineer Center said. “We must enhance mission assurance, and we can’t do it without energy assurance. I don’t care if it’s a small modular reactor that we put up in Alaska, geothermal in Wyoming, solar power in New Jersey, or wind power in Massachusetts.”
The Air Force estimates the project could yield cash rent consideration of over $75.8 million throughout the expected 35-year lease.
Under the Air Force’s Enhanced Use Lease program, special purpose entities managed by private developers such as Terra-Gen, LLC, incrementally leased and developed the property in exchange for cash or in-kind consideration at or above fair market value.
The new EUL area comprises up to 4,000 acres of non-excess underutilized property at Edwards and surrounding private property.