VANCOUVER, Aug. 9 /CNW/ - Plutonic Power Corporation (TSX: PCC) and GE Energy Financial Services, a unit of GE (NYSE: GE), announced today that their Toba Montrose General Partnership ("TMGP") has commenced selling electricity to BC Hydro under an Electricity Purchase Agreement ("EPA") from power generated by the East Toba River and Montrose Creek generation facilities. TMGP has received confirmation from BC Hydro that the project has met its guaranteed commercial operations date commitment under the EPA. Both facilities are now operating at full capacity while their commissioning continues.
The operation of the facilities comes at the end of nearly a three year construction program and is the first operational clean power project in Canada for Plutonic and GE Energy Financial Services. Plutonic and GE thank their First Nations partners - the Klahoose, Sliammon and Sechelt First Nations - in addition to all of the men and women who have worked on the project over the last three years for their dedication and efforts.
"For Plutonic Power, the achievement of commercial operations and sale of electricity from the two Toba Valley facilities marks a significant transformational milestone," said Donald McInnes, Vice Chair and CEO of Plutonic Power. "We are extremely grateful to our equity financial partner GE, our First Nations partners, our debt syndicate providers, our customer BC Hydro, our contractor Peter Kiewit Sons Co. and all their subcontractors and the communities that have supported the project."
"Achieving commercial operations of the East Toba River Montrose Creek Project is a significant step toward realizing British Columbia's clean energy potential," said Alex Urquhart, President and CEO of GE Energy Financial Services. "We look forward to continuing our successful partnership with Plutonic, supporting renewable energy growth in the province and expanding our business in Canada."
The two facilities remain under the control of Peter Kiewit Sons Co., which has constructed the project under a fixed price construction contract. The project will sell all of the power generated from the two facilities to BC Hydro under a 35-year EPA. Substantial completion and handover of the facilities to TMGP is expected by the end of the third quarter after further operator training, testing and other commissioning activities.
Until substantial completion is achieved, revenues from power sales will be credited against the $663 million budgeted capital expenditures. As a bonus for early completion, Peter Kiewit Sons Co. is entitled to a portion of energy sales from the East Toba facility prior to July 1, 2010 and from the Montrose facility prior to November 1, 2010.
The project is one of several that Plutonic and GE have undertaken that will help British Columbia meet its goal of electricity self-sufficiency by 2016 by using 93 percent clean domestic generation sources. In addition to the Toba Montrose Project, Plutonic Power and GE Energy Financial Services are constructing the 340,000 megawatt-hours per year Dokie Wind Project near Chetwynd, British Columbia. It is scheduled to achieve commercial operation in the first quarter of 2011. GE and Plutonic have also executed a 40-year EPA with BC Hydro for another hydroelectric power project, the Upper Toba Valley Project.
About GE Energy Financial Services
GE Energy Financial Services' experts invest globally across the capital spectrum in essential, long-lived and capital-intensive energy assets that meet the world's energy needs. In addition to capital, GE Energy Financial Services offers the best of GE's technical know-how, technology innovation, financial strength and rigorous risk management. Based in Stamford, Connecticut, the GE business unit helps its customers and GE grow through new investments, strong partnerships and optimization of its $21 billion in assets. For more information, visit www.geenergyfinancialservices.com.
GE (NYSE: GE) is a diversified infrastructure, finance and media company taking on the world's toughest challenges. From aircraft engines and power generation to financial services, health care services and solutions, and television programming, GE operates in more than 100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide. For more information, visit the company's Web site at www.ge.com.
About Plutonic Power Corporation
Plutonic Power is a Canadian based company developing and operating clean power projects. Plutonic is a partner in 1,700,000 megawatt-hours per year of hydro and wind projects. Commercial operations have now been achieved at the first of two facilities in the Toba Montrose Project. Active construction is also underway on the $227.5 million, Dokie Wind Project, diversifying Plutonic Power's clean power portfolio.
The TSX Exchange does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Statements - This news release contains certain forward-looking statements, including statements regarding the business and anticipated financial performance of the Company. These statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from results contemplated by the forward-looking statements. When relying on forward-looking statements to make decisions, investors and others should carefully consider the foregoing factors and other uncertainties and should not place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. The Company does not undertake to update any forward looking statements, oral or written, made by itself or on its behalf.
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For further information: For further information: Andy Katell, GE Energy Financial Services, Office: 203-961-5773; Lisa May, Plutonic Power Corporation, Director, Investor Relations, Office: 604-669-4999 ext 1034, Cell: 604-314-3362, firstname.lastname@example.org