8minute Solar Energy Expands Development Pipeline to 18 Gigawatts with New Solar-Plus-Storage Power Plants

PVTIME - 8minute Solar
(8minute) announced that the company has added 3 gigawatts
(GW) of large-scale solar projects to its development pipeline this month, for
a total of over 18 GW—enough to provide power for 20 million people. The
company further announced it has attracted additional corporate-level funding
to develop the rapidly growing pipeline, the majority of which will be
converted to the company’s new generation solar power plant design with battery
energy storage.

“While the financial markets, especially tax equity, face uncertainty
right now due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 8minute as a company is financially
very well positioned. Given our strong cash position and balance sheet, as well
as the strength of our financial partners, we’re fortunate to take the
long-view and continue our growth trajectory to deliver clean, reliable
power—day and night—for less than the cost of fossil fuels,” said Dr. Tom
Buttgenbach, President and CEO of 8minute. “Over the last few months, we have
added to the bench strength of our team, focused on developers, engineers and
technology innovators, so we can continuously improve our cost competitiveness
and bring successful solar projects to communities in California, Texas and
across the Southwest.”

To support its 18 GW development pipeline, 8minute recently raised new
development capital from its joint venture partners, including J.P. Morgan Asset Management
and Upper Bay Infrastructure Partners. The University of California (UC) Office of the Chief
Investment Officer of the Regents
has joined the clean energy
partnership as a significant investor.

“We have been impressed not only by the breadth and depth of 8minute’s
solar portfolio, but also by its engineering and technology-focused vision for
the future of the clean energy industry,” said UC Chief Investment Officer
Jagdeep Singh Bachher. “We look forward to supporting the next round of
groundbreaking, large-scale projects 8minute is developing in California and

The additional investment will accelerate the execution of 8minute’s 18 GW
pipeline to deliver low-cost, fully dispatchable solar power across California
and the Southwestern United States.

A nationwide leader in solar-plus-storage, 8minute was the first to beat
the cost of fossil fuels with solar photovoltaics (PV) and late last year
received approval for the Eland Solar & Storage Center, the lowest-cost solar
and energy storage project in the country. 8minute plans to replicate this
model across its pipeline to provide a reliable alternative for baseload power

The 400-megawatt (MWac) Eland Solar & Storage Center in Kern County,
California will have an energy storage capacity of 1,200 megawatt-hours (MWh).
The Eland project represents a notable victory for the City of Los Angeles, the
State of California and the solar industry, dispelling misconceptions about the
affordability and availability of baseload, utility-scale clean energy. The
Eland project demonstrates that renewables can replace dispatchable fossil fuel
generation at a price of under 4 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) fixed for 25
years, effectively reducing the cost to ratepayers and increasing grid

“As we develop more projects with large storage capacity, we will continue
to partner with local communities, evaluate the environmental implications of
our work and prioritize responsible business practices across all areas of our
pipeline,” added Buttgenbach. “This strategic investment with our joint venture
partners is an important part of this vision that extends beyond the
funding—it’s an opportunity to align with world-class research labs and
technology centers at the forefront of energy innovation. We look forward to
strengthening this partnership as we advance on our mission to make solar
energy abundant and affordable throughout the country.”

“We are excited to partner with long-term, aligned capital to grow our
platform investment in 8minute and accelerate the execution of several of
8minute’s next generation solar power plants,” said Mario Maselli and Marietta
Moshiashvili, Co-Founders and Managing Partners of Upper Bay.
8minute can achieve record-setting economics in part by partnering with
best-in-class investors, such as patient capital from institutional investors,
including Upper Bay, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, and UC’s Office of the Chief
Investment Officer of the Regents.