That is pretty cool. This is why we can't be afraid of alternative energy sources. Just paraphrasing here but more oil is extracted at a lesser cost to the environment and the company. I hope they pass the savings to the consumer and hire more US workers with that savings.
The company has posted a string of net losses, totaling $177 million. Much of its $32 million in revenue over the past three years has come not from power generation, but from a contract with Chevron to use its technology to recover . . . not-so-renewable heavy oil. The filing advises investors that BrightSource has "generated substantial net losses and negative operating cash flows since our inception and expect[s] to continue to do so for the foreseeable future."
Fortunately for BrightSource, its efforts are sustained by an impressive array of federal, state and local subsidies, including a $1.6 billion loan guarantee from the Department of Energy, one of the largest solar guarantees on record. The company notes federal provisions providing solar projects with a 30% investment tax credit through 2016, as well as accelerated depreciations of capital costs for solar entities, among other goodies.
Good, if highly ironic, use of solar. It's not the greenest use, but is a good resource utilization due to being cheap to run and effectively using the indigenous resources in the area.
I hope other EOR sites located in sunny areas make use of this technology. It seems tailor-made for the Middle East.
Also, think of the desalination potential. That's why this technology needs to be scaled up and used more places. If it can make enough steam to extract oil, what about boiling enough drinking water for folks in sunny Florida or coastal Texas? They're going to run out of potable groundwater in the next 40-50 years, and it's not going to be pretty.
BrightSource, which filed with U.S. securities regulators for an initial public offering in April, said in an amended filing on Thursday that it had set aside $40.2 million to account for losses since the project's inception, $29.7 million more than it originally anticipated.
BrightSource has said previously that the contract for the Chevron EOR project was entered into at a loss so that the start-up could prove that its technology works at a commercial scale.
"We do not anticipate entering into another loss contract similar to the Chevron agreement," BrightSource said in the filing.
I never said anything about the financials. Apparently using a full-scale pilot project is never heard of in industry. Or the massive taxpayer money backing the oil companies and the generous tax breaks they get. The very generous oil company tax breaks should be mentioned as another use of taxpayer money.
It's using an abundant natural resource in the area to cheaply and effectively do its thing. In that sense it's a very good resource utilization.
Regardless of financials, it's great to see the technology at work. We may need that solar boiler as a desalinator for survival in a few decades.
At that point, financials will be out the window and we'll be glad to have a cup of water.
Typical massive inefficiency from central planning. More tax dollars flushed down the toilet.
The 22,000 gallons per day oil equivalent for traditional steam generating techniques would still have the infrastructure as a depreciation, and the fuel input as a business expense...now at least 8 million gallons per annum are getting to market instead of burned to make steam.
Emerging technologies can't magically appear in fully market functional form, and typically don't have the tax advantages that established businesses get off shore