Clean Tech + Renewable Energy

Launchpad of the West Coast floating offshore wind industry. Pioneer in utility-scale solar. The Central Coast is emerging as a hub of renewable energy critical to meeting the state and nation’s ambitious carbon-free energy goals.

 

Three global companies have begun developing the nation’s first floating wind farms in a 376-square-mile area off the Central Coast, already home to one of the world’s largest single solar farms and the proposed site of the world’s largest battery storage plant. And a vision for a clean tech innovation park as Diablo Canyon’s next chapter is moving forward.

This clean energy focus reflects the environmentally conscious ethos on the Central Coast —a long-time energy-exporting region that’s also the birthplace of Earth Day and home to nation-leading carbon neutrality targets.

Recent Highlights

SunHydrogen draws $45M for renewable hydrogen technology

The investment will fuel development of SunHydrogen’s nanoparticle-based green hydrogen technology and related renewable hydrogen innovations.

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World's largest battery storage plant proposed for Morro Bay

Texas -based Vistra Corp. is pursuing plans for a $500 million, 600-megawatt battery storage facility — the world’s largest — at the shuttered Morro Bay power plant.

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New carbon-capture algae farm planned for North SLO County

Global Algae, an X Prize-winning innovator in carbon removal, is building a $46 million, 160-acre commercial algae farm in eastern San Luis Obispo County.

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ASSETS + RESOURCES

Offshore wind turbine

Offshore wind

Three international companies have set to work planning the nation’s first floating offshore wind farms after December’s auction of the 376-acre Morro Bay Wind Energy Area.

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A birds eye view of Diablo canyon power plant

Diablo's next chapter

The plant’s industrial area offers unrivaled energy assets for pioneering the next chapter of our state and nation’s energy independence and resilience.

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a view of the top of a refinery

Refinery redevelopment

Another reuse opportunity lies in the 1,640 acres surrounding a Phillips 66 refinery closing this year, offering heavy industrial zoning, heavy electrical power and rail spurs.

Young professionals conferring by a desk with computers

Clean tech incubator

The successful HotHouse incubator is establishing a clean tech offshoot in Morro Bay, offering a range of services to support and scale startups in renewable energy and other sustainability-focused arenas. The location will also house an SBDC outreach center.

Three students looking at a computer screen

Engineering talent

Both Cal Poly and UC-Santa Barbara have highly ranked engineering programs with concentrations in electrical and environmental engineering and advanced labs for industry collaboration. Cal Poly is home to the Electric Power Institute, and UCSB hosts the U.S. Department of Energy’s Center for Energy Efficient Materials.

Solar panels stretching out into the horizon

Utility-scale solar

Two massive solar projects call SLO County home: the 550-megawatt Topaz Solar Farm and the 250-megawatt California Valley Solar Ranch, together generating electricity to power 260,000 homes. REC Solar, started in SLO 20+ years ago, was acquired by Duke Energy and is part of its new Sustainable Solutions division.

500kv

state grid connections at Diablo Canyon and Morro Bay

~3,000

highly trained transitioning energy workers

$100k

average annual wage

Clean Tech + Renewable Energy Companies

Click the dots to see companies in the region, and find detailed company, industry and regional data in our data center.

 

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