EL CENTRO – The Imperial Irrigation District has entered into a 10-year power purchase agreement with Southern California Public Power Authority for an average of 12 megawatts of geothermal energy from the Heber-1 Geothermal power plant in Heber, Calif.
The agreement calls for a total of 46 megawatts, of which Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will receive 34 megawatts and the remaining balance will be delivered to IID.
The plant is expected to produce power at 95 percent or more of its capacity year-round, which is a higher capacity than wind or solar and also saves on transmission and other integrated costs. This additional renewable energy will enable IID to serve approximately 7,400 homes in its service territory and will decrease greenhouse gas emissions by 70,500 metric tons each year.
“By integrating our indigenous resources, the district is able to continue integrating renewable energy into its portfolio while, at the same time, supporting sustainability and increasing jobs in the Imperial Valley,” said Carl Stills, interim energy manager. “We are thrilled to have contracted our first long-term geothermal project enabling the supply of electricity from a local resource.”
IID’s current renewable resource mix is 20.4 percent. This additional geothermal power will increase IID’s mix to approximately 25 percent. California law stipulates utilities must work to meet renewable portfolio standards in three stages: 20 percent by 2013, 25 percent by 2016 and 33 percent by 2020.