Geothermal energy potential high in Calif. desert
The Geothermal Energy Association has joined with other influential alternative energy groups in endorsing the Salton Sea Restoration and Renewable Energy Initiative, which could provide consumers affordable, long-term electric price stability through a renewable baseload fuel supply that does not fluctuate.
“The Salton Sea Known Geothermal Resource Area (SSKGRA) is one of the greatest opportunities for new geothermal energy development in the United States,” according to the Geothermal Energy Association Board.
Some of the advantages of the initiatives:
*Creating thousands of construction jobs and hundreds of permanent jobs and bringing other substantial economic benefits to Southern California;
*Enhancing environmental quality and supporting species habitat conservation.
According to the Imperial Irrigation District, “The Initiative will first focus on developing up to 1,700 megawatts of new geothermal energy at the Sea – enough to power more than one million homes. Not only is there more geothermal generating capacity in the Imperial Valley than anywhere else in the U.S., but geothermal energy can be produced with minimal impact on landscape and habitat. It also provides a steady, reliable source of energy to the state electricity grid that is not subject to weather or seasonal fluctuations.”
GEA recently issued a status report on California’s geothermal resources that says they are still largely untapped. The report found that the SSKGRA is considered by many to be the best opportunity for growth in California in the near term. Geothermal power is a viable, cost-effective, and plentiful renewable energy option to meet California’s climate goals. Utilizing the Golden State’s geothermal resources can help achieve carbon reductions with the least total cost and highest power system reliability.
Read more about renewable energy:
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.