PORTLAND, Ore. - Ocean Power Technologies, Inc. and Pacific Northwest Generating Cooperative are pleased to announce that they have signed an agreement to work cooperatively on the Company’s development of the Reedsport OPT Wave Park located in Douglas County near Reedsport, Oregon. As part of the initial program, OPT expects to install its ocean-tested PowerBuoy systems initially generating a total of 2 MW approximately 2.5 miles off the coast at a depth of 50 meters. OPT has been issued a preliminary permit by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for up to 50 MW of capacity at the site, and plans to develop, own, and operate the initial 2 MW wave power park.
PNGC Power is a Portland, Oregon-based electric power cooperative serving 15 distribution cooperatives with service territory in seven western states. In addition to supporting OPT in the permitting process and power transmission for the project, PNGC Power will work cooperatively with OPT to pursue a power purchase agreement, under which PNGC Power would purchase the electrical energy output of the 2MW wave power park from OPT. Further, PNGC Power will provide its expertise regarding grid interconnection and its experience in meeting the standards of the Bonneville Power Administration, which operates much of the region’s power system.
Dr. George W. Taylor, Chief Executive Officer of OPT, said: “We are pleased that PNGC Power has pledged their support for this project and to be working cooperatively with them. PNGC Power has demonstrated the vision and leadership to harness our Earth’s most powerful and consistent natural resource – the ocean.”
“As PNGC Power strives to maintain competitive prices and reliable service for its members we are increasingly looking at promising new technologies to meet load growth,” said PNGC Power President and Chief Executive Officer, John Prescott. “Our participation in the development of the Reedsport OPT Wave Park demonstrates our member cooperatives’ commitment to explore alternative energy resources to meet customer needs into the future.”
PNGC Power plans to provide a significant portion of the funds required to fabricate and install the first PowerBuoy at the Reedsport site. The agreement also provides a framework under which PNGC and OPT may continue to work together in connection with the phased scale-up to a 50MW wave power park. Specifically, PNGC Power will have the option to participate in ownership or power purchase in future commercial phases of the project. PNGC Power also plans to work with other utilities to increase participation in this first-of-a-kind project in Oregon.
On February 15, 2007, OPT was issued a preliminary permit by FERC for the Reedsport project. The Company has already begun consultation with key stakeholder groups and will continue to work closely with these groups over the initial stages of the project. In September 2006 Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski appointed an Oregon Solutions Team to help expedite the development and licensing of the Reedsport OPT Wave Power Park.