Geothermal Energy | Carson Lake Power Plant

Nevada Power Co. which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sierra Pacific Resources, have announced that it plans to build a geothermal power plant at Carson Lake, near Fallon. The project is planned to proceed as a joint ownership agreement with Reno company Ormat Technologies. The plant will have a capcity of 30MW which will give it the capability of powering up to 22,000 homes per year.

The geothermal power plant will rely on hot rock generation in which steam will be created by passing water across the heat generated deep in the earth’s crust. The steam will be forced at high pressure through turbines to create electricity.

“Development of renewable energy projects is a key element of our strategy and this marks a major step forward in our commitment to directly invest in such projects,” said Michael Yackira, Sierra Pacific Resources president and chief executive officer. “Ormat has a proven track record as a top geothermal developer and we are very pleased to be able to reach an agreement with them to co-develop and expand the Carson Lake project.”

The joint ownership agreement must be filed with the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) for approval. The two companies already share a power purchase agreement and this must also be expanded to reflect the new co-development agreement. Each party will be entitled to 50 percent of the production tax credit (PTC) or 50 percent of the Investment tax credit (ITC) as applicable.

Given that the project is still very much in the early stages, no expected completion date has been provided. This isn’t expected until at least approval of the partnership is granted.

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