Houston-based Fervo Energy announced two geothermal power purchase agreements totaling 320 megawatts (MW) with Southern California Edison (SCE), according to a June 25 press release.

The two 15-year agreements will provide carbon-free geothermal energy for the equivalent of 350,000 homes across Southern California.

SCE will purchase the power from Cape Station, Fervo’s 400 MW development in Beaver County, Utah, with the first 70 MW phase of the project expected to be operational by 2026. The second phase will be operational by 2028.

Drilling results from February 2024, show faster drilling times and an overall reduction in costs at Cape Station, Fervo said. These positive results supported continued commercialization and readiness for large-scale agreements. Fervo has now contracted 373 MW of renewable power from Cape Station.

 "Enhanced geothermal systems complement our abundant wind and solar resources by providing critical base load when those sources are limited,” said California Energy Commission Chair David Hochschild. “This is key to ensuring reliability as we continue to transition away from fossil fuels."

In 2021, the California Public Utilities Commission issued a mid-term reliability mandate requiring utilities to procure 1,000 MW of non-weather-dependent, non-battery, zero-emission energy to increase the reliability of the state’s electric grid.

By using techniques adapted from the oil and gas industry, Fervo said its drilling technology has de-risked a scalable approach to geothermal development.