Thursday, December 23, 2010

25-Year PPA for Nevada Solar Power Plant

The U.S. Department of Interior approved solar power developer SolarReserve's proposed 110-megawatt Crescent Dunes solar thermal power plant capable of storing energy in Nevada.

In a release, SolarReserve, of Santa Monica, California, said it planned to start construction in mid 2011.

The company did not disclose the cost of the project, but based on other projects it is working on; Crescent Dunes would cost about $475 million.

Last week, California approved of the company's proposed 150-MW Rice solar project and Arizona advanced the permitting for the 150-MW Crossroads solar project. The company has said Crossroads would cost an estimated $650 million.

The company expects Crescent Dunes to create about 450 direct jobs and more than 4,000 indirect and induced jobs during construction, as well as 50 permanent operations and maintenance jobs once the facility is operating.

As for economic benefit, SolarReserve estimated the project would have an operating budget of more than $5 million and will generate about $40 million in sales and property tax revenues over its operating life.

SolarReserve uses solar power and molten salt storage technology developed by Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp (UTX.N).

SolarReserve said the facility will be able to store enough energy to provide electricity for up to eight hours after sunset.

Last December, SolarReserve signed a 25-year power purchase agreement with NV Energy (NVE.N) for the sale of electricity from the project, which can power about 75,000 Nevada homes.


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