By San Francisco Business Times

The first of Kaiser Permanenteâ¿¿s planned 15 solar projects went live today at its Santa Clara Medical Center.

Kaiser announced in early 2010 that it would install 15 megawatts of solar power systems at 15 facilities by the end of 2011. Thatâ¿¿s enough to power about 1,900 average homes.

San Francisco-based Recurrent Energy is financing and developing the solar projects for Kaiser. Recurrent will own the solar systems and sell the power back to Kaiser at a pre-approved rate. Recurrent was acquired by Japanese electronics-maker Sharp in 2010 but still operates under the name Recurrent Energy.

The deployment is part of a grander sustainability plan from Kaiser, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce the use of harmful chemicals and introduce more sustainable food at its hospitals and office buildings.

Kaiserâ¿¿s long term energy plan could include additional renewable energy sources including thermal energy, wind energy and fuel cells.

Copyright 2011 American City Business Journals

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