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San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) says its 117-mile Sunrise Powerlink transmission line linking San Diego to renewable power in California's Imperial Valley will play an important role this summer, helping maintain reliable electric service without the 2.2 GW provided by the recently shuttered San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS).

"The Sunrise Powerlink is more valuable and helpful to our region and beyond today than when it was originally envisioned," says SDG&E Chairman and CEO Jessie J. Knight Jr. "It not only adds another major transmission artery to our local transmission grid, it is bringing a significant amount of imported power to our region during the summer months to compensate for the loss of power from SONGS."

SDG&E dedicated the Sunrise Powerlink in July 2012.

Since 2011, SDG&E says it has signed 10 contracts for renewable power projects located in Imperial County, totaling more than 1.2 GW. Among these are Pattern Energy's 265 MW Ocotillo Wind project, connected to the Sunrise Powerlink in December 2012, and  the 130 MW Tenaska Imperial Solar Energy Center South, which was energized in April.

In addition, the utility says several more solar projects are under construction in Imperial County and expected to go online later this year and in 2014.


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