SolarReserve, a Santa Monica developer of utility-scale solar power projects, said it signed a 25-year agreement to sell electricity to Pacific Gas and Electric Co. from SolarReserve’s proposed Rice Solar Energy Project.

The 150-megawatt solar energy project will be located 30 miles northwest of Blythe in east Riverside County, privately held SolarReserve said in a late Tuesday press release. The facility will supply enough electricity to the Northern California utility to power up to 68,000 homes during peak periods.

The project will employ an advanced molten salt system from United Technologies Corp. SolarReserve holds the exclusive worldwide license for the technology, which features efficient energy storage so it can provide electricity reliably, whether the sun is shining or throughout the night.

“Throughout the process, we have worked hard to minimize the project’s impact on local resources, which is why the project is being developed on privately-owned land that had been previously used as an air field,” SolarReserve Chief Executive Kevin Smith said in a statement.

Pending an environmental review by regulators, the project could break ground by the spring of 2011, the company said. It is expected to create 450 construction jobs during the two-year construction period and 45 permanent jobs once in operation.

Separately, SolarReserve said it signed a 25-year power purchase agreement with NV Energy for the energy generated by a 100-megawatt solar project that the company is developing in Nevada.

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