Interior backs solar, wind farms in Calif., Ariz.

December 20, 2011 - 3:10 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration has approved a pair of renewable energy projects being developed on public lands in Arizona and California.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said Tuesday his department has approved a 300-megawatt solar farm southwest of Phoenix and a 186-megawatt wind farm east of San Diego.

The Sonoran Solar Energy Project, being developed by Florida-based NextEra Energy Resources, will generate enough electricity to power about 90,000 homes. The Tule Wind Project, developed by Iberdrola Renewables, the U.S. division of a Spanish energy company, will be able to power about 65,000 homes.

The latest projects are the 24th and 25th renewable energy projects on public lands approved in the past two years.

Salazar also said he will push for offshore wind projects in the Atlantic Ocean.