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GEA Forum 2014

Geothermal Power Plants - USA

The United States currently leads the world’s countries in installed geothermal energy capacity with approximately 3,187 MW online and continues to be one of the principal countries to increase the development of its geothermal resources. For more information about developing geothermal projects, see GEA's 2012 US Geothermal Power Production and Development Report.

Terms used in Power Plant Details:
  • Installed capacity (MW): nominal nameplate capacity
  • Running capacity (MW): gross capacity of plant in operation

State Summary: A power plant at the Chena Hot Springs Resort 60 miles north of Fairbanks provides 0.73 MW of electricity. More small power units are expected to be installed at the site that will provide power and heat for the entire resort that serves 70,000 visitors each year.

State Summary: U.S. geothermal installed capacity remains concentrated in California. In 2005, California’s geothermal capacity exceeded that of every country in the world. In 2007, 4.5 % of California’s electric energy generation came from geothermal power plants, amounting to a net-total of 13,439 GWh. California currently has 2565.5 MW of installed capacity, with more under development.

State Summary: Currently, Hawaii has one power plant operating on the big island of Hawaii, called the Puna Geothermal Venture (PGV). PGV delivers an average of 25-35 megawatts of firm energy on a continuous basis, supplying approximately 20% of the total electricity needs of the Big Island.

State Summary: In December 2007, construction of the first geothermal power plant in Idaho was finished and commercial sale of the produced electricity began in January 2008. Raft River, a binary plant that uses a 300°F resource, has a nameplate production capacity of 15.8 MW. Currently, net electrical power output is approximately 11.5 MW. Other power plants, including an expansion to Raft River, are now under development.

State Summary: Three new power plants were added to Nevada's geothermal portfolio in 2009 and one in 2010. The state's 22 operating geothermal power plants have a current total operating capacity of 441.8 MW. With more developing geothermal projects than any other state, Nevada's installed capacity is expected to increase significantly in the future.

State Summary: In July 2008, Raser Technologies’ 0.24 MW pilot installation project went online. The full project, Lightning Dock, is currently expected to produce 15 MW of electrical power.

State Summary: In August 2009, a 0.28 MW geothermal unit began producing electricity at the Oregon Institute of Technology's Klamath Falls campus. 15 known geothermal projects are in development in the state.

State Summary: Utah currently has an installed geothermal capacity of 42 MW, with plans for substantial further development. Units 1 and 2 of the Blundell power plant have an installed capacity of 23 MW and 9 MW, respectively. The 10 MW low-temperature Hatch Geothermal Power Plant, located in Beaver County, began delivering power to Anaheim, California in April 2009.

State Summary: In August 2008, a 0.25 MW geothermal hydrocarbon co-production (GHCP) unit was installed at the Department of Energy's Rocky Mountain Oil Test Center (RMOTC) near Casper, Wyoming. The unit was shut down for maintenance after one year of operation, but has since resumed operation.
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