Reno, Nev., August 27, 2010 — Gradient Resources, formerly Vulcan Power Co., a developer of geothermal energy projects, unveiled its new name and logo at the inauguration of its corporate headquarters in Reno, Nevada.
Gradient’s properties cover about 170,000 acres of private and federal land. The company was founded in Bend, Oregon where its headquarters were based since its inception in 1991.
In addition to its Reno headquarters, the company has six geothermal power projects in advanced development near the towns of Fernley, Fallon, Hawthorne and Lovelock, Nevada and presently employs a total of 101 in the state.
“The state of Nevada has a tremendous geothermal resource and access to attractive energy markets where there is a strong demand for electricity produced from geothermal resources,” said Craig Mataczynski, CEO of Gradient Resources. “Its leaders and communities have taken great steps to encourage the industry’s growth. Over the next five years, Gradient will bring some 300 MW of clean geothermal energy and create more than 1,000 construction and drilling jobs and an additional 80 permanent jobs.”
The state of Nevada is considered to have the greatest geothermal potential in the U.S. Its current operating capacity is second only to that of California and includes 20 power plants with about 430 MW of installed capacity.
The state’s 86 projects under development could potentially boost capacity anywhere from an extra 2,120 MW to 3,686 MW allowing it to surpass California in actual geothermal capacity.
“Projects like this are exactly what we had in mind when we passed the Economic Recovery Act,” said Nevada Senator Harry Reid. “I applaud Gradient’s move to Nevada and look forward to working with them as we continue to take advantage of tax incentives that are helping us put Nevadans back to work and diversify the economy.”
Gradient’s Patua site, near Fernley, is expected to be the company’s first geothermal power plant. Phase I drilling recommenced in February 2010 and construction of a 60 MW power plant is projected to begin in the first quarter of 2011.
The project will produce electricity around the clock with power deliveries projected to occur as early as the second quarter of 2012, continuing through 2033. The project initially will provide 500 GWh per year, eventually ramping up to 1,000 GWh per year.
Geothermal energy is a renewable power source by which naturally occurring hot water reservoirs are drilled, producing geothermal fluids that can be used as a clean alternative to fossil fuels burned to generate electricity.
Geothermal reservoirs are replenished by injecting the produced water back into the reservoir, establishing a long-term renewable energy resource without any emissions of greenhouse gases.