Sacramento Municipal Utility District to Buy Geothermal-sourced Clean Power from Vulcan Power Company
Sacramento, CA and Bend, OR, April 28, 2010 - The Sacramento Municipal Utility District (“SMUD”) has signed a 21-year contract with Patua Project, LLC, a subsidiary of Vulcan Power Company (“Vulcan”), a developer of geothermal energy projects, for the purchase of up to 132 megawatts (MW) of baseload renewable energy from the Patua geothermal plant to be constructed in northern Nevada. Under the agreement, SMUD receives energy, environmental and carbon-neutral attributes from the project.
Vulcan’s Patua geothermal energy project site, located near Fernley, Nevada, will be built in three phases and is expected to be the company’s first geothermal power plant. Phase I drilling recommenced in February 2010 and construction of a 60-MW power plant is projected to begin in January 2011. The project will produce electricity around the clock with power deliveries projected to occur as early as the first quarter of 2012, continuing through 2033.
“This major renewable power source adds diversity to SMUD’s current renewable power portfolio,” said SMUD General Manager and CEO John DiStasio. “The additional baseload power supply avoids the challenge of integrating an intermittent source of renewable energy, such as wind and solar.”
The project initially will provide 500 gigawatt hours (GWh) per year, eventually ramping up to 1,000 GWh per year. These gigawatt hours will count towards SMUD’s aggressive goal of 33 percent renewable energy by 2020. Last year, renewable energy accounted for approximately 19 percent of SMUD’s power supply and will reach 20 percent by the end of 2010.
“A critical factor for our business is ensuring that we have the customers for the power we expect to produce,” said Bob Warburton, acting CEO of Vulcan Power. “This power purchase agreement with SMUD is our third with a major utility. We are pleased to support the Sacramento area and the state of California in its commitment to renewable energy sources.”
Geothermal energy is a renewable power source by which naturally occurring hot water reservoirs are drilled, producing geothermal fluids that can be used as a clean alternative to fossil fuels burned to generate electricity. Geothermal reservoirs are replenished by injecting the produced water back into the reservoir, establishing a long-term renewable energy resource without any emissions of greenhouse gases.
As the nation’s sixth largest publicly owned utility, SMUD has been providing low-cost, reliable electricity for more than 60 years to Sacramento County (and a small portion of Placer County). SMUD is a recognized industry leader and award winner for its innovative energy efficiency programs, renewable power technologies, and for its sustainable solutions for a healthier environment. The utility is on track to become the first large California utility to receive 20 percent of its energy from renewable resources. For more information, visit smud.org.
About Vulcan Power
Vulcan Power Company is a privately-held geothermal developer founded in 1991 that accumulated significant land leases during an industry downturn. The company holds an extensive property portfolio of geothermal leases and applications covering more than 170,000 acres in Nevada, California, Oregon, and Arizona. Vulcan has signed 20-year term Power Purchase Agreements (“PPAs”) with Nevada Power Company, Southern California Edison Company and Sacramento Municipal Utility District, and is currently negotiating additional PPAs with other utilities. Vulcan is a vertically integrated company and wholly owns the subsidiary companies that provide its drilling related services. Investors include an affiliate of Denham Capital and a principal investing division of Bank of America Merrill Lynch. For additional information on Vulcan and geothermal power, go to www.vulcanpower.com.
For More Information Contact
For the Sacramento Municipal Utility District
For Vulcan Power Company
(212) 279-3115 ext. 243