Salt Wells Geothermal Energy Projects Environmental Impact Statement
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Carson City District-Stillwater Field Office has prepared a Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for two Salt Wells Energy geothermal energy projects and a proposed right-of way for a transmission line. Ormat Technologies, Inc. and Vulcan Power Company are the proponents of the geothermal plants and Sierra Pacific Power Company is the application for the ROW.
BLM received the three proposals as separate projects, and determined that because of the same timing, geography and similarity of the types of actions, the three proposals will be analyzed in one EIS. A separate record of decision will be issued at the end of the process for each proposal.
Vulcan proposes the development of up to four geothermal power plants and facilities; Ormat proposes the development of one geothermal power plant and facility; and Sierra proposes above-ground electrical transmission lines, electrical substations, and switching facilities. The proposed facilities would be sited on private property and public land managed by the BLM and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.
The Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) analyzed the potential impacts associated with three separate geothermal energy and transmission projects proposed by Sierra Pacific Power Company, Ormat Technologies, Inc., and Vulcan Power Company in the Salt Wells area of Nevada. Together the three projects are referred to as the Salt Wells Energy Projects (Proposed Actions). The Projects Area encompassed by the three proposals covers approximately 24,152 acres in the Salt Wells area of Nevada, including an area just southwest of Fallon to approximately 24 miles southeast of Fallon.
Combined, the three proposals could result in up to five 30- to 60-megawatt geothermal power plants with up to 71 associated wells (39 for the proposed actions and the remainder previously authorized), pipelines and associated facilities, and a 22-mile, up to 125-foot-wide right-of-way for a new transmission line, with substations and switching stations. Six alternatives to the Proposed Actions were analyzed in the EIS. In addition, a No Action Alternative for each of the Proposed Actions was analyzed.
For more information, please contact Colleen Sievers, BLM Energy Projects Coordinator, at 775-885-6000.
As required when preparing an EIS, the BLM identified alternatives to proposed projects. Alternatives analyzed in the FEIS and potential environmental impacts were compared against those potential impacts of the Proposed Action.
The following agencies had cooperating agency status for the project:
- Bureau of Reclamation
- Churchill County
- City of Fallon
- NAS Fallon
- Nevada Division of Minerals
- Nevada Department of Wildlife