CanGEA responds to B.C geothermal permit auction results

CALGARY, March 31 /CNW/ - The Canadian Geothermal Energy Association (CanGEA) is pleased to congratulate CanGEA member Sierra Geothermal Power Corp. (SGP) on their successful bid for the Knight Inlet parcel in British Columbia's geothermal exploration permit auction.

"We are excited to have won the bid for the Knight Inlet lands. These lands have excellent potential for development of a geothermal resource," said Gary Thompson, President and CEO of SGP. "The geothermal rights from the Crown coupled with our Da'naxda'xw/Awaetlala Nation agreement is the ideal combination to move a project forward."

The March 29 auction is the first of three proposed for the year by BC's Ministry of Energy, Mines & Petroleum Resources, and the first since 2004. Other parcels at Lakelse Lake, Mount Cayley and Sloquet Creek will be auctioned later in the year. The province has also extended the deadline for tenure request submissions to May 5, 2010 and hopes to have additional titles available for auctions in June and September of this year.

"British Columbia has significant geothermal energy potential and continues towards advancing geothermal energy generation in this province," said Minister Blair Lekstrom. "We will put this resource to work for our economy, generating new jobs and new wealth for rural B.C. communities, while lowering greenhouse gas emissions."

CanGEA has been active in lobbying the BC government to expedite the land tenure process. "In the western United States there are literally hundreds of geothermal land sales each year," notes CanGEA Policy Director David Gowland. "BC has a long way to go but this is an important first step. We now look forward to the introduction of a BC Clean Energy Act - expected in the current legislative session - which will further support development of geothermal and other renewable energy resources in British Columbia."

"We are particularly pleased that Sierra Geothermal, a BC-based company and one of CanGEA's founding members, has taken the lead in this respect," said Gowland. "This permit acquisition builds upon the memorandum of understanding signed between Sierra and the Da'naxda'xw/Awaetlala Nation in 2009 with respect to developments in the Band's traditional territory in the Knight Inlet area some 250 kilometers north-west of Vancouver."

Results of the Knight Inlet auction are posted on the Ministry website at http://www.empr.gov.bc.ca/Titles/OGTitles/SaleResults/2010Results/Pages/March2010-Geothermal.aspx

About CanGEA

CanGEA is a national industry association that believes we can provide competitively priced, emissions free, renewable, base-load energy to Canadians and to U.S. export markets. CanGEA works on behalf of our members to facilitate the growth of geothermal power projects and promote publicly listed companies on the Canadian Exchanges. Visit us at www.cangea.ca.

SOURCE CANADIAN GEOTHERMAL ENERGY ASSOCIATION (CANGEA)

For further information: For further information: David Gowland, Policy Director, Canadian Geothermal Energy Association, dave@cangea.ca

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CANADIAN GEOTHERMAL ENERGY ASSOCIATION (CANGEA)

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