CAISO’s First Geothermal Plant in 30 Years Comes Online

POWER Magazine

The first geothermal power plant built in more than three decades within the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) balancing authority has come online. Mammoth Pacific Geothermal, an Ormat Co. subsidiary, declared the 30-MW Casa Diablo IV (CD4) commercially operational on July 20.

CD4 is located on public land two miles east of the Town of Mammoth Lakes in Mono County, California. The project is part of the Mammoth complex, which includes three other plants—one completed in 1985 and two added in 1990—each with a generating capacity of approximately 10 MW. The complex taps into the Long Valley Caldera’s hydrothermal system at a point where the hot water is only a few hundred feet below ground.

While construction began in August 2021, the project faced extreme conditions during fire season, snowstorms, and supply chain issues. The closed-loop binary project will now provide Central Coast Community Energy and Silicon Valley Clean Energy with 14 MW of baseload energy under a 10-year power purchase agreement (PPA). The project is the first in Ormat’s portfolio to sell output to Community Choice Aggregators, the company noted.

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