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Commercial operation started for expanded Steamboat Hills geothermal plant in Nevada

Geothermal plant by Ormat, Steamboat Hills, Nevada (source: ThinkGeoEnergy)
Alexander Richter 22 Jun 2020

Ormat Technologies has started commercial operations of the expanded Steamboat Hills geothermal power plant near Reno, Nevada. The expansion adds 19 MW to a total installed power generation capacity of 84 MW.

In a release today, Ormat Technologies Inc. (NYSE: ORA) announced that the enhancement of its Steamboat Hills geothermal power plant located near Reno, Nevada is complete and achieved commercial operation on June 6, 2020. Enhancement work included the replacement of all old generating unit equipment with new, state-of-the-art equipment and resource modifications that increased the generating capacity of the Steamboat complex by approximately 19 MW to a total of 84 MW. The new equipment will increase the productivity and efficiency of the power plant and is expected to reduce maintenance costs per kWh.

The Steamboat Hills power plant continues to sell its electricity under the current 25-year long term portfolio power purchase agreement with Southern California Public Power Authority (SCPPA), with 100% of the 28.4 MW of capacity going to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

Isaac Angel, CEO of Ormat Technologies, said, “For more than 30 years, Ormat’s Steamboat Hills power plant has been producing environmentally responsible, advanced geothermal energy in Reno for the region. Today, Ormat unveiled the new Steamboat Hills plant, benefitting from new and advanced technology which will enable this resource to continue providing clean and renewable power, more efficiently than before, for decades to come. This new state-of-the-art facility will provide additional electricity for 22,000 homes while offsetting four million tons of CO2, providing the highest level of efficiency and safety in the geothermal industry. The increased generation of our Steamboat Hills power plant helps LADWP to make the transition to 100% clean energy while maintaining a reliable and perpetual power supply for Los Angeles”.

Mr. Angel added, “This additional capacity added to our existing electricity portfolio helps us to mitigate the decrease in our product backlog, which is affected by the continuation and the increasing severity of the COVID-19 global pandemic. Currently, we no longer expect to sign a significant product sale contract in the coming months in a different market. In light of this current situation, we are continuing our efforts to expand and expedite our growth in the electricity segment and energy storage segment.”

Source: Company release