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SAN FRANCICO-Locally headquartered Recurrent Energy has acquired a 350-megawatt, Canada-weighted solar power project pipeline from UPC Solar, a Chicago-based renewable energy development company. Neither private company revealed the dollars involved in the deal, which includes UPC Solar’s development team to complete the Canada solar projects.

Recurrent says it will develop, own, finance, and operate the solar projects in UPC Solar’s multi-megawatt pipeline. The company, which has focused on smaller utility-scale power assets ranging from 2 megawatts to 20 megawatts each, wants to have more than 100 MW of operational assets by 2012.

The acquisition from UPC follows a recently proposed series of renewable energy measures from Canada’s Ontario Power Authority, according to Recurrent Energy president Arno Harris. Among the measures in the Green Energy Act, 2009 is a solar feed-in tariff that would secure stable and competitive electricity rates for renewable energy providers. When implemented, the tariffs would represent the first North American equivalent to policies that are driving substantial solar power development in Germany and Spain, he says.

Back in the US, Recurrent is working on a planned 5-MW installation with The City and County of San Francisco. Upon completion, it will be the largest municipal solar installation in the US.

UPC Solar is among several renewable energy companies under the UPC Energy Group, which has over 750 MW of operational renewable energy assets and some 3,000 MW in development worldwide. UPC currently owns and operates projects for the San Diego Unified School District and the Coca Cola Bottling Company, and manages the U.S. Army’s largest solar installation in Fort Carson, CO, as well as the nation’s fourth-largest solar PV project, a 3 MW plant in Bucks County, PA.

Earlier this month, Hayward, CA-based Optisolar agreed to sell its solar project pipeline and core development team to Tempe, AZ-based First Solar for $400 million in First Solar stock, according to a document filed with the SEC by First Solar. One month earlier, Optisolar laid off half its staff, suspended the build-out of its 650,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in Sacramento and began reviewing its real estate needs in an attempt to conserve cash while seeking additional funding.

That acquisition included a 550 MW AC solar development project under a power purchase agreement with PG&E; a project pipeline of additional 1,300 MW AC, which are in negotiation with Western region utilities for solar development projects; strategic land rights of approximately 136,000 acres (approximately 210 square miles) with the potential to deploy up to 19 gigawatts AC of utility-scale solar power projects; the core development team responsible for assembling and executing on the solar project pipeline.

First Solar said it expects to construct solar power plants developed under the acquired solar power project pipeline over the next several years and sell them to a combination of regulated utilities, diversified energy companies and other independent power producers. Project development is planned to begin as early as 2010.

The transaction is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2009. Optisolar, having shed its power plant development unit, will focus on manufacturing thin-film solar panels.

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