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Title: Agua Caliente Wind/Solar Project at Whitewater Ranch

Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians (ACBCI) was awarded a grant by the Department of Energy (DOE) to study the feasibility of a wind and/or solar renewable energy project at the Whitewater Ranch (WWR) property of ACBCI. Red Mountain Energy Partners (RMEP) was engaged to conduct the study. The ACBCI tribal lands in the Coachella Valley have very rich renewable energy resources. The tribe has undertaken several studies to more fully understand the options available to them if they were to move forward with one or more renewable energy projects. With respect to the resources, the WWR property clearly has excellent wind and solar resources. The DOE National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has continued to upgrade and refine their library of resource maps. The newer, more precise maps quantify the resources as among the best in the world. The wind and solar technology available for deployment is also being improved. Both are reducing their costs to the point of being at or below the costs of fossil fuels. Technologies for energy storage and microgrids are also improving quickly and present additional ways to increase the wind and/or solar energy retained for later use with the network management flexibility to providemore » power to the appropriate locations when needed. As a result, renewable resources continue to gain more market share. The transitioning to renewables as the major resources for power will take some time as the conversion is complex and can have negative impacts if not managed well. While the economics for wind and solar systems continue to improve, the robustness of the WWR site was validated by the repeated queries of developers to place wind and/or solar there. The robust resources and improving technologies portends toward WWR land as a renewable energy site. The business case, however, is not so clear, especially when the potential investment portfolio for ACBCI has several very beneficial and profitable alternatives.« less
 [1] ;  [2]
  1. Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, Palm Springs, CA (United States)
  2. Red Mountain Energy Partners, Sante Fe, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, Palm Springs, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Weatherization and Intergovernmental Program (EE-5W)
Country of Publication:
United States