Our renewable energy portfolio includes geothermal, which taps into heat beneath the Earth's surface to generate electricity. We think this area has an important role to play in North America's shift toward a greener energy production mix.
In mid 2010, Enbridge invested in the 35-MW Neal Hot Springs geothermal project in eastern Oregon (net production amount is 23 MW). The project is being developed by U.S. Geothermal Inc., which will also construct and operate the facility. The project will involve injecting water below the surface, pushing hot water from the earth up through a production well, and converting it into steam through a turbine to generate electricity. The water will then be re-injected back into the ground.
When commercial operation begins in late 2012, Neil Hot Springs will deliver electricity to the Idaho Power grid under a 25-year power purchase agreement. The annual yield for the project will be about 191,000 megawatt-hours — enough to power about 17,500 homes.
Our Geothermal Investment - Key Facts:
- 23 MW - of emissions free power capacity from our geothermal investment.
- 17,500 - number of homes that can be powered each year by the Neal Hot Springs project.
- 375,000 tonnes - in annual greenhouse gas emission reductions, when compared to emissions generated by a similar sized coal-fired generation facility.