Idaho, United States [RenewablEnergyWorld.com] U.S. Geothermal Inc. has been selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to enter into due diligence review on an US $85 million project loan for its Neal Hot Springs project in eastern Oregon. The DOE loan is expected to provide 80% of the $106 million estimated total capital cost.
Construction of a binary cycle power plant utilizing significantly improved technology is expected to begin in mid 2010. The new plant, designed to deliver 22 megawatts (MW) of power net to the grid, is scheduled to begin commercial operations in late 2011. The DOE loan is anticipated to be a combined construction and long term loan and provide the project with a low cost annual interest rate.
On February 26, 2009 U.S. Geothermal submitted an application for the Neal Hot Springs project to the DOE’s Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy and Advanced Transmission and Distribution Solicitation loan guarantee program under Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.
U.S. Geothermal also announced that it made a regular annual grant of compensation options pursuant to its Stock Option Plan to directors, employees and consultants to acquire 1,795,000 shares in capital of the company. The options are exercisable at a price of $0.92 per share for a term of 5 years expiring May 26, 2014.