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Sonoma Clean Power purchases Geothermal and Solar Power


Sonoma Clean Power purchases
Geothermal and Solar Power

By Kate Kelly

Less than six months after beginning to serve customers, Sonoma Clean Power (SCP) reached another milestone today with two large-scale purchases of clean geothermal and solar power. The new power agency’s rates are already 4 to 5% lower than PG&E’s rates today, and these deals will help the new power agency keep its rates lower into the future. 

Sonoma Clean Power provides electric generation service to customers in most of Sonoma County. Currently over 22,000 customer accounts are receiving service and starting in December an additional 140,000 customer accounts will be eligible to receive SCP’s cleaner mix of power. All cities are participating in the program with the exception of Petaluma and Rohnert Park, where a vote on whether to allow participation in SCP will be taken by January 31, 2015. Healdsburg has its own municipal utility, and is not a part of SCP. 

The first contract is for 10 years of geothermal power from Calpine's local Geysers facilities, with rising volumes reaching 50 megawatts (MW) in 2018, making the total energy coming from that source 23% of SCP’s mix by that year. The second contract is for 20 years of solar power from Recurrent Energy, adding 40 MW to SCP’s previous purchase of 30 MW for a total of 70 MW. 

As is customary with utilities, SCP has met early renewable energy goals by buying short-term contracts. When combined with the new deals, this brings SCP’s long-term contracted renewable sources in California to over 33%, which exceed California’s 2020 goals for utilities. 

“We are incredibly pleased with the competitive pricing we were able to secure for these two renewable energy deals, which solidify SCP’s financial position and support excellent rate savings for our customers for years to come,” said SCP’s Director of Power Services and Procurement Nathanael Miksis. “Together, these 70 MW of solar and 50 MW of geothermal provide enough electricity to power nearly 70,000 Sonoma County homes through 2026,” he added. 

With these well-priced long term contracts, SCP is now turning to local Sonoma County projects. “We expect to get a few local solar projects under contract in the next six months, and are excited about our ProFIT program, which lets commercial building and land owners sell us their power,” said CEO Geof Syphers. “We’re talking with private companies and other public agencies about their options to make a business out of serving Sonoma County’s residents and businesses with clean local power." 

For more information, visit or call 1 (855) 202-2139.