Two large solar-power projects were proposed in Southern California this week that together could provide up to 500 megawatts of power, just over half the state’s current solar capacity and enough to provide electricity to about 300,000 homes. One of the projects, proposed by utility Southern California Edison, aims to put solar panels on 65 million square feet of commercial buildings across Southern California. It’s expected to cost $875 million and could be completed in five years, pending approval by the state’s utility regulators. The other project, to be sited in the Mojave Desert, is a solar thermal power plant proposed by utility Florida Power and Light; the plant could be operational by 2011. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) praised the increase in solar power. “These are the kinds of big ideas we need to meet California’s long-term energy and climate change goals,” he said.