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Sempra Gets $337 Million Guarantee for Arizona Solar Project

Sempra Energy, California’s third-largest utility, received a $337 million U.S. Energy Department loan guarantee to build a 150-megawatt solar project in Arizona.

Sempra will sell electricity from the Mesquite Solar 1 plant to California’s largest utility, PG&E Corp., under a 20-year contract, the Energy Department said today in an e-mailed statement.

The Mesquite project in Maricopa County, about 45 miles (72 kilometers) west of Phoenix, will use 800,000 multicrystalline silicon solar panels from Wuxi, China-based Suntech Power Holdings Co., San Diego-based Sempra said in February.

Lawmakers in Washington are scrutinizing the Energy Department’s program in the wake of Solyndra LLC’s Sept. 6 bankruptcy filing. The Fremont, California-based solar-panel maker received a $527 million loan guarantee.

Southern California Edison Co. is the state’s second-largest utility.

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