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Vulcan Power Supports Plan for 'Green Grid' Transmission Upgrades.

ENERGY RESOURCE-6 February 2008-Vulcan Power Supports Plan for 'Green Grid' Transmission Upgrades(C)2008 JeraOne -

Vulcan Power Company today announced a preliminary plan for green grid transmission upgrades to deliver a "green gigawatt" (1,000 megawatts) of clean geothermal power to Los Angeles and Las Vegas from natural steam zones located in northwest Nevada.

Called the G3 Power Plan, it is in response to an estimate by scientists at the Great Basin Center for Geothermal Energy at University Nevada Reno that 2,500 megawatts (MW) of geothermal natural steam exists in northern Nevada. This clean steam fuel could generate power for 2.5 million people.

While about 240 MW of geothermal has been online in Nevada for 15 years, which is evenly split between Nevada and California utility buyers Sierra Pacific Resources and Southern California Edison Company, Vulcan Power says the new green grid upgrades are needed for Nevada steamfields to grow up to 2,500 MW.

Seven companies with advanced sites have been selected to supply progressive Nevada and California utilities with about 500 MW of geothermal, with over half utilizing these grid upgrades.

"The geothermal genie," said Vulcan board member Sandy Lonsdale, "is being held hostage by antiquated transmission lines from northern Nevada to California and southern Nevada."

Cost estimates for the G3 Plan are expected in the second quarter of 2008 while very preliminary "Green Tap" budget estimates have been received. Electranix recently estimated a 500 MW tap on the 3,100 MW Pacific DC Intertie line in Nevada will cost $125 to $180 million and a 1,000 MW tap from $170 to $250 million, depending on design, location and if it connects with Sierra Pacific to provide counterflow power to Nevada.

"G3 Plan transmission economics are very compelling," said Vulcan board member Richard Rodgers, a former senior banker at Bank of America. "Geothermal is a bargain for California, particularly when compared to new gas fired power, believed to cost $0.096 per kWh. The first 1,000 MW of new geothermal could justify building about $4 billion worth of grid upgrades and doubling that output justifies $8 billion in upgrades."

G3 benefits also include the economic and environmental benefits of clean power, which exceed $18 billion and nearly 2 billion gallons of groundwater savings per year.

The G3 Plan team includes former transmission planning executives Jim Kritikson of SCE and Robert Jackson of SDG&E, DC line specialist Electranix and Ed Evatz, former deputy director Nevada USBLM.

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Publication:Energy Resource
Date:Feb 6, 2008
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