850 MW Solar Thermal Plant Will Support Oil Extraction in California

A new 850-MW solar thermal project will help oil and gas producer Aera Energy power its operations at the Belridge oilfield in Southern California.

The project will use solar steam and solar electricity for the oilfield, reducing natural gas currently used at the site. Steam is injected into a reservoir in the heavy oil production process called thermal enhanced oil recovery.

Fremont, Calif.-based GlassPoint Solar will build the project.

“Our partnership with Aera demonstrates the growing energy convergence where renewables and traditional energy leaders are working together to address some of the biggest challenges of our time,” Sanjeev Kumar, senior vice president, GlassPoint, Americas, said in a statement.

GlassPoint said that the companies plan to break ground on the Belridge Solar plant in the first half of 2019. The project is expected to start producing steam and electricity as early as 2020. 

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