The future of geothermal, wind, solar and other "green" power sources is looking greener than ever in Nevada -- as in the color of money, that is.
Nevada Sen. Harry Reid, long a renewable power advocate, will discuss this at a meeting Thursday in Kings Beach.
Reid will touch on Nevada's vast and mostly untapped renewable power resources, as well as on pending federal legislation aimed at promoting renewable development throughout the country.
Also on hand will be representatives of Advanced Thermal Systems, a Reno firm with licensing rights to a technology that promises to significantly lower the cost of generating power. The firm plans to use the technology first on two Reno geothermal projects.
An economic study released April 7 and commissioned by the state's renewable energy task force claims a total economic benefit of $21.5 billion through 2035 by complying with the state's renewable portfolio law. The law requires that Nevada's two utilities make renewables at least 15 percent of the power they sell by 2015.
The benefit would come from new jobs and from business-related activities of the expanded energy market.
Geothermal power, generated by mining underground heat using steam and hot water, plays a big role in this forecast. Geothermalwas more than one-third of the power sold in the first round of renewable portfolio contracts with state utilities.
About half of this first-round power, 44 megawatts, will be provided by Advanced Thermal Systems. Company president Shuman Moore said the project will use Kalina technology, which employs improved methods for heat exchange to generate power.
This project is expected to be online by 2005. It will be sited at Steamboat Hills, where an ATS affiliate generates 30 megawatts from a less-efficient technology. The project will generate 44 megawatts with a plant that has the same footprint as the existing one, and at lower cost.
ATS will build an11-megawatt plant in the same area to power the Redfield campus of the University of Nevada, Reno, slated to open in 2004. ATS hopes to sell power not used by the campus to local utility Sierra Pacific.
if you go
Sen. Reid and ATS representatives sopeak on renewable power in Nevada
6:30 p.m. Thursday
North Tahoe Conference Center, 8318 North Lake Boulevard, Kings Beach.
RSVP to attend at Sierra1@Sierrahightech.com, call Jack Schwartz at (775) 849-2465, or go to www.SierraHighTech.com.