VALE, OREGON--(Marketwired - Sep 6, 2013) - U.S. Geothermal Inc. (NYSE MKT:HTM)(GTH.TO) and Enbridge Inc. (ENB)(ENB.TO) today will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the completion of the first commercial geothermal power plant to be built in the State of Oregon. The Neal Hot Springs Geothermal Plant located near Vale, Oregon, was developed by U.S. Geothermal, a leading renewable energy company focused on the development, production, and sale of electricity from geothermal energy. Enbridge, a North American leader in delivering energy and one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations, is an equity partner in the venture.
FERC Chairman Jon Wellinghoff and Douglas Schultz, Director of Origination for the U.S. Department of Energy's Loan Programs Office (LPO), along with other national, state, and county government officials, were on hand to participate in the event. Chairman Wellinghoff was previously a member of U.S. Geothermal's Board of Directors prior to accepting his FERC commission, and was on the Board at the time development of the project was first undertaken. Mr. Schultz leads the LPO's lending activities focused on innovative alternative energy projects in the United States including solar, wind, geothermal, biofuels, clean fossil, nuclear, and the related transmission and extraction infrastructure.
The Neal Hot Springs Project was the first geothermal project to obtain a loan guarantee under the DOE's Title XVII loan guarantee program, which was created by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to support the deployment of innovative clean energy technologies. The Neal Hot Springs deployed the first of its kind binary cycle process, utilizing a supercritical cycle that uses R134a refrigerant as the working fluid, an innovative air-cooled condenser, as well as pre-fabricated modular construction of major plant components.
"We are extremely pleased to be honored with such distinguished guests at our grand opening celebration for our Neal Hot Springs project. We are very excited to unveil not only U.S. Geothermal's first power plant in Oregon, but also the first commercial geothermal power plant in the State," said Mr. Dennis Gilles, Chief Executive Officer of U.S. Geothermal Inc. "The completion of this historic renewable energy plant marks an important step in expanding the contribution of geothermal energy in the United States to help meet our country's effort to become more energy independent."
"As an energy delivery company, Enbridge is proud of its growing list of renewable and alternative energy technology projects," said Chuck Szmurlo, Vice President, Alternative and Emerging Technology, Enbridge Inc. " Over the past few years we've invested more than three billion dollars in a variety of green power projects, creating a strong base of assets which now includes investments in 12 wind farms and four solar facilities with a capacity to generate over 1,700 MW of emissions free energy."
"Geothermal energy is a natural progression for Enbridge's renewable energy portfolio. As owners and operators of solar and wind projects, we understand that in order for renewable energy to become a larger part of the electricity system, we need to deal with the intermittent nature of the source - the sun isn't always shining and the wind doesn't blow all the time, but the heat of the earth is constant and not intermittent," Szmurlo added.
About U.S. Geothermal Inc.:
U.S. Geothermal Inc. is a leading renewable energy company focused on the development, production and sale of electricity from geothermal energy and is operating geothermal power projects at Raft River, Idaho, San Emidio, Nevada and Neal Hot Springs, Oregon. The company is developing El Ceibillo, an advanced stage, steam geothermal prospect located within a 24,710 acre (100sq km) energy rights concession area located 8.5 miles (14 km) from Guatemala City, the largest city in Central America.
The information provided in this news release may contain forward-looking statements within the definition of the Safe Harbor provisions of the US Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on U.S. Geothermal Inc.'s current expectations and beliefs and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that can cause actual results to differ materially from those described, including but not limited to, the results from the exploration, production and injection well drilling at El Ceibillo. Readers are cautioned to review the risk factors identified by the company in its filings with Canadian and US securities agencies. Forward-looking statements are based on management's expectations, beliefs and opinions on the date the statements are made. U.S. Geothermal Inc. assumes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if management's expectations, beliefs, or opinions, or other factors, should change.
The NYSE MKT and the TSX do not accept responsibility for the adequacy of this release.
About Enbridge Inc.:
Enbridge Inc., a Canadian Company, is a North American leader in delivering energy and has been included on the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations. As a transporter of energy, Enbridge operates, in Canada and the U.S., the world's longest crude oil and liquids transportation system. The Company also has a significant and growing involvement in the natural gas gathering transmission and midstream businesses, and an increasing involvement in power transmission. As a distributor of energy, Enbridge owns and operates Canada's largest natural gas distribution company, and provides distribution services in Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and New York State. As a generator of energy, Enbridge has interests in over 1,600 megawatts of renewable and alternative energy generating capacity and is expanding its interests in wind, solar and geothermal energy. Enbridge employs more than 10,000 people, primarily in Canada and the U.S., and is ranked as one of Canada's Greenest Employers, and one of the Top 100 Companies to Work for in Canada. Enbridge's common shares trade on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges under the symbol ENB. For more information, visit www.enbridge.com. None of the information contained in, or connected to, Enbridge's website is incorporated in or otherwise part of this news release.