The Copper Mountain power plant, a solar (photovoltaic) power plant in Boulder City, NV, produces enough electricity to power 17,000 homes.
This isn’t a typical “green” energy project, though. This is a true green energy one: aside from $60 million in federal and state tax incentives, the project, including the 450 acres of land obtained to house the collectors, was entirely privately financed. The tax incentives I consider a wash, because those are typical offerings from any jurisdiction in order to induce companies of any industry to locate their business here, rather than there.
Scott Crider, spokesman for Copper Mountain’s parent Sempra US Gas & Power, points out that the solar plant is a winner for taxpayers, estimating that the plant will generate $2 for the governments involved for every $1 in tax incentives over the next 30 years.
Copper Mountain and Sempra demonstrate that serious projects need no government largess. Moreover, that payoff ratio gets even better when projects are wholly privately financed.