PG&E Tries Again on Geothermal, Meets Clean Energy Goal


On the heels of PG&E losing its geothermal power contract with Western GeoPower, the California utility said on Friday that it’s trying again with a geothermal power purchase agreement. This time it’s a 175 MW contract with Calpine Corporation, for the very same geyser field in Northern California that it lost so very recently.

PG&E says the Geysers Geothermal Field, which is 75 miles north of San Francisco, will provide enough clean energy to power 45,000 homes in northern and central California. And geothermal power will make up three percent of PG&E’s energy portfolio.

But particularly exciting for the utility, PG&E says that with this contract, they can now meet the state mandate that 20 percent of their electricity generation comes from clean energy. Oh happy day . . . well, that’s if the current contracts don’t go cold, too. The current contract needs to be approved by the regulatory body, the California Public Utilities Commission.

Given the contract with Calpine is for a much larger 175 MW, compared to the former Western GeoPower contract which was for 25.5 MW, PG&E will probably ask the CPUC too give it more of a priority than they did for the WGP deal. Hopefully, for the sake of the 20 percent finish line!



Green energy is definitely the best solution in most cases. Although I am not entirely agree with some comments. Technology like solar energy, wind energy, fuel cells, zaps electric vehicles, EV hybrids, etc have come so far recently.



I believe that is 50 million BARRELS of oil a year.



Dr. No asks: “Anyone concerned here?”

Well no.

The geyser fields (not real geysers) in northern california have been producing electricity for almost 40 years – there is (or seems to be) some earth rumblings in the immediate area and some neighbors have sued, claim it cracked the stucco, that sort o f thing.

No experts I know of think it would suddenly do any worse.

However we do know that it produces in electricity the equivilant of about 50 million gallons of oil a year just in the state of california – most of that comes from the “geysers.”



Green energy is definitely the best solution in most cases. Technology like solar energy, wind power, fuel cells, zaps electric vehicles, EV hybrids, etc have come so far recently. Green energy even costs way less than oil and gas in many cases.

Dr. No

What cracks me up is that last year a significant earthquake was created due to a pilot scale geothermal plant operating in Basel, Switzerland, causing significant building damage. Reason being that cooling of small area of the earth layer causes local shrinking, which inevitably leads to earthquakes. Now, Switzerland is not your common earthquake region. Well then, why though do we do geothermal in California ? Anybody concerned here ? Hello ???

Comments are closed.