When it comes to solar power — both rooftop and utility-scale — there are few regions in the country as well-positioned as the East Bay. And recent news puts a pair of local companies even further out front. First, on Monday, Oakland’s BrightSource announced that it had secured $1.6 billion in loan guarantees from the US Department of Energy, as well as a $168 million investment from Google. Then, on Tuesday, Richmond- and San Jose-based SunPower held a dedication ceremony for its new solar-panel manufacturing plant in Milpitas. Both developments could play major roles in guiding the future of solar power in the East Bay and around the world.