Reclamation Announces Decision on Salt Wells Geothermal

Media Contact: Pete Lucero, 916-978-5100

For Release: December 21, 2011

The Bureau of Reclamation has signed a Record of Decision for the Final Environmental Impact Statement on the impacts of issuing a 20-year license authorizing a 22 mile overhead 230kV electric transmission line and a 2.5 mile buried fiber optic line as part of the Salt Wells Geothermal Project. It is Reclamation’s decision to implement the Preferred Alternative (#3) as described in the Final Environmental Impact Statement.

Reclamation and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) received applications for electric transmission from Sierra Pacific Power Company. BLM also received two separate geothermal utilization plans and applications permits from Ormat Technologies, Inc., and Vulcan Power Company. Together the three projects are referred to as the Salt Wells Energy Projects. The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was prepared by BLM, pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. As a cooperative agency, Reclamation used this EIS for its analysis of the overhead transmission line and buried fiber optic line that cross Reclamation managed lands and features.

The Project Area is located in the Salt Wells area of Nevada, southeast of Fallon, in Churchill County. The proposed transmission line and fiber optic line would be sited on a combination of private property, public land managed by the BLM and Newlands Project lands managed by Reclamation.

Reclamation’s Record of Decision (ROD) can be viewed at If you encounter problems accessing the documents online, please call 916-978-5100 or e-mail The Final EIS and BLM’s RODs can be viewed at For additional information, please contact Andrea Minor at 775-884-8366 or e-mail

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

Relevant Link:

Record of Decision