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Eagle Crest Energy Company
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Eagle Mountain Pumped Storage Project represents a sustainable solution and the best of two worlds:
The Eagle Mountain Pumped Storage Project will capture wind energy, utilize solar and other residual power sources during nights and weekends (off–peak hours). The captured off-peak energy will be used to pump water to an upper reservoir where the energy will be stored. The water will then be released to a lower reservoir through an underground electrical generating facility where the stored energy will be released back into the Southwestern grid during “high demand peak” times, primarily weekdays.
Pumped Storage is a sustainable solution as it is the only proven technology that allows energy to be stored in an off-peak period and released during on-peak hours.
Eagle Mountain is located in Southern California, one of the fastest growing and most dynamic electricity markets in the U.S. The project will augment the transmission grid connecting the large power markets of Southern and Mid-California, helping meeting the States’ needs for significant new and replacement power sources immediately and over the next several decades. The project will assist the State with its established goal of 20% energy from renewable sources by 2010 and 33% by 2020.
Eagle Mountain Pumped Storage Project will generate 1,300 MW of firm, stable, and dispatchable power when needed. It will provide electricity during the peak demand periods and sustain unexpected generation outages, which will help correct imbalances in the southwestern power transmission grid. Pumped Storage is the only feasible, proven technology to store energy in the off-peak and utilize it during on-peak hours. Through its ability to store the off-peak energy produced by windmills, solar panels, and baseload nuclear and fossil fuel plants, this single project can accomplish the equivalent of many smaller peak-energy projects. This project will also help make renewable wind and solar projects fully integrated, reliable generation sources.
Eagle Mountain Pumped Storage Project is Green
Eagle Crest Energy has completed significant studies of the project and site and submitted a draft license application to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in June 2008. The Company expects to file its application by Spring 2009. The project has few of the traditional permitting and licensing challenges that can delay issuance of a FERC license, such as aquatic, recreational or surface water impacts. The Company’s request to engage in the State’s transmission interconnection process was accepted by the California Independent System Operator (ISO) on June 2, 2008.
Clean Energy for California
California is facing the challenge of providing power to meet increasing energy demand while abiding by requirements that more of this energy be produced from renewable sources and meet upcoming limits on greenhouse gas emissions. These requirements will reduce California’s dependence on fossil fuels and the State’s contribution to a reduction in global warming, but the requirements present challenges for finding more ways to produce reliable, renewable, clean energy such as wind, solar, geothermal, and certain hydropower facilities.
California’s continued demand for more energy makes this project attractive to regulators and utilities. Statewide peak demand is expected to grow by 890 MW per year for the next 10 years and beyond, according to the California Energy Commission. Current public policy encourages the development of renewable energy resources, including wind power, which in 2003 produced enough electricity to power 530,000 California homes.
Southern California specifically will face significant challenges in meeting the upcoming requirements while continuing to provide reliable energy to its growing population. However, Southern California is on the right course to addressing this impending energy crisis. The Bureau of Land Management has received over 130 applications for solar, wind and geothermal projects in the Southern California desert. In 2006, San Diego County built its first wind energy project along Interstate 8, and the first new wind power plant in decades was built, with another slated for completion in 2009.
While energy projects have sometimes been opposed by environmental and recreational groups, they are a fundamental part of meeting society’s ever increasing demand for energy, and the need for much of this energy to be obtained from renewable sources.
The Eagle Mountain Stored Energy Project represents another step forward in creating renewable resources, and reducing the need for less efficient, fossil-fuel alternatives. The project would significantly contribute to the pressing need for new electricity generation, and assist Utilities attain the State of California’s Renewable Portfolio Standards.
Pumped Storage: How it Works
Simple in concept and technology, the Eagle Mountain Pumped Storage Project acts as a reserved supply of potential power to provide energy on demand to utility customers. Two reservoirs comprise the storage capacity. During off-peak nights and weekends water is pumped through an underground turbine system to the upper reservoirs, where it is stored for release back through the turbines to generate electricity at periods of peak demand. To the extent possible, renewable energy sources such as wind and solar will be used for this recharging. The project features four reversible pump-turbine units, with combined generating capacity of 1,300 MW. All water conveyance and powerhouse elements will be constructed below ground.
The project has several unique attributes that make its development for pumped storage very attractive in comparison to other potential projects in the region:
The two existing depleted mine pits are located about 14,000 feet apart, with an elevation difference between the pits of approximately 1,500 feet. The central pit will be the upper reservoir and the east pit will be the lower reservoir. The storage space now available in the lower pit is about 28,000 acre-feet in total. Construction of two dams at the upper reservoir site is required to augment its storage capacity.
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