Riverside, CA – The City Council last week authorized Riverside Public Utilities to move forward with an agreement with Shoshone Renaissance LLC that will eventually provide 64 megawatts (MW) of renewable geothermal power resources for the city, increasing its renewable resources portfolio to 33 percent by 2011.
Riverside Public Utilities gets its electricity from a variety of power sources, and has been aggressively increasing its purchases of "Green Power" (power received from renewable energy resources such as solar, geothermal, hydroelectric, and wind power) over the past eight years to meet established Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) goals set by its Board of Public Utilities and City Council.
The RPS established targets for Riverside's total power mix to be 20 percent renewable by 2010, 25 percent by 2015, and 33 percent by 2020. Currently renewable resources make up 11 percent of the City's energy mix. Under the new agreement with tribal-owned Shoshone Renaissance, LLC (Northwestern Band Shoshone Nation), who is constructing the new geothermal power plant in northern Utah in three 32 MW phases, Riverside will meet and surpass those goals much sooner.
"We are very excited to enter into this agreement, which continues our commitments to providing our customers with reliable energy resources while increasing our renewable portfolio goals for the city," said Riverside Public Utilities' General Manager David H. Wright
Geothermal power plants utilize super-heated fluid from the Earth to create pressurized steam which is used to turn the blades of a turbine that creates electricity. Compared to solar or wind generation sources (which don't produce energy at night or when there is no wind), geothermal plants provide reliable sources of energy for utilities to use for baseload needs. At full capacity, the 64 MW received through the new facility will provide 20 percent of Riverside's baseload.
The first 32 MW phase of construction is anticipated to be complete and producing energy in early 2010 with the second 32 MW unit online approximately one year later. The contract with Shoshone Renaissance LLC, was facilitated by Evolution Markets Inc., and will last for a term of 30 years.
Established in 1895, Riverside Public Utilities is a consumer-owned water and electric utility governed by a Board of nine community volunteers that provides high quality, reliable services to over 105,000 metered electric customers and 63,000 metered water customers throughout the City of Riverside. The Utility is committed to increased use of renewable energy resources and sustainable living practices that help reduce environmental impacts within the City of Riverside and the state of California.