BLM Issues Decision on Environmental Assessment for Phase III McGinness Hills Geothermal Project, Lander County

BATTLE MOUNTAIN, Nev. – The Bureau of Land Management, Mount Lewis Field Office, has completed its analysis of Ormat Inc.’s proposal for an expansion to their McGinness Hills Geothermal Facility. This newest expansion is being referred to as ‘Phase III’ and will consist of access roads, a pipeline, a power plant, wells and transmission line. Total new disturbance for this expansion is estimated at 42 acres, as the majority of work will be completed on the previously analyzed ‘Phase I’ and ‘Phase II’ footprint.


The Decision Record (DR) allows operations to begin at the Phase III project site. The final Environmental Assessment included extensive coordination with the Nevada Department of Wildlife, as well as, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Geological Survey, tribal governments and other interested parties. Alternatives in the EA examined the expansion’s range of potential issues like air quality, cultural resources, wildlife and wildlife habitat, Native American religious concerns, threatened and endangered species, minerals, noise, grazing management, access and land use, and social and economic values.


“This decision is in accordance with BLM priorities, including making America safe through energy independence, getting America back to work and shared conservation,” said District Manager Douglas Furtado. “The Battle Mountain District has a heavy focus on the responsible development of energy and mineral projects. This geothermal expansion will increase the clean energy capacity within, Nevada, create new jobs and stimulate the local economy and energy market.”


The EA, DR and other relevant documents are available on the BLM ePlanning webpage at https://go.usa.gov/xnvzd and hardcopies of these documents are available for review at the MLFO at the above address during regular business hours, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.


The first portion of the McGinness Hills geothermal plant, located roughly 70 miles south of Battle Mountain, was established in July, 2012 and the facilities have been producing clean energy ever since.


If you have any questions or require clarification on this EIS, please call Kevin Hurrell, Planning and Environmental Coordinator at (775) 635-4000.

This year, we invite everyone to reimagine your public lands as we celebrate 75 years of the BLM’s stewardship and service to the American people. The BLM manages approximately 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The agency’s mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. 

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Bureau of Land Management

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Kevin Hurrell
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