Take Advantage Of Solar Power
As the report states, the 110 megawatt Crescent Dunes solar thermal energy project near Tonopah will be capable of generating electricity to power
more than 43,000 homes (75,000 homes during peak project operations). One hundred percent of the electricity generated by the project will be sold to
NV Energy under a 25-year contract, providing Nevada's largest utility with clean, reliable energy at stable prices that will be unaffected by
volatility in oil, natural gas or coal prices. In addition, SolarReserve's innovative U.S.-developed energy storage technology can store the sun's
energy for an entire day to generate electricity when needed, without interruption after the sun goes down or during cloudy periods – even 24 hours
Critical to the need to diversify Nevada's economy, the project will directly employ more than 600 workers on site during peak construction
activities, nearly all being Nevada residents. Construction of the facility began in September of 2011, with the solar power tower portion of the
project completed in December 2011. To date, there have been more than 100 workers on site so far with local Nevadans comprising 81 percent of the
construction workforce. Commercial operation is scheduled for the end of 2013.
Nevada-based companies have made up 80 percent of the on-site contractors thus far, including union and non-union firms. When accounting for offsite
services and supply, more than 4,300 direct, indirect and induced jobs will be created at companies throughout the U.S. that provide engineering,
equipment supply and manufacturing, transportation and other value-added services. To date, orders for the project have been placed for equipment and
services in more than 20 states across the U.S.
As Senator Reid's report points out, SolarReserve's project has helped Nevada rank third nationally for utility-scale solar projects under
development. The Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project is now the world's most advanced solar thermal energy technology. In addition to the ability to
store the sun's energy for use during peak electricity demand periods, the project will generate almost two times the electricity in kilowatt-hours
than that generated by a similarly sized photovoltaic (PV) or competing direct-to-steam solar thermal energy technologies.
With an investment of nearly $1 billion, this project could not have been built without federal policy programs to support renewable energy
advancement and implementation. The project completed full financing in September of 2011, utilizing the Department of Energy's Loan Guarantee
program along with more than $250 million in private equity investment from SolarReserve, ACS Cobra, a worldwide leader in the engineering and
construction of power plants and thermal solar facilities, and Santander, a global financial services and banking leader. Nevada's Renewable
Portfolio Standard, requiring that the state generate 25 percent of its power from renewable sources by 2025, has been critical in attracting
companies like SolarReserve to the state.
Once operational, the project will expend more than $10 million per year in salaries
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