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VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA–(April 14, 2008) – Plutonic Power Corporation (TSX:PCC) is pleased to provide an update on its 2008 activities to advance the development of its Green Power Corridor located in southwestern British Columbia.Construction is underway on the company’s flagship project; the 196 MW East Toba River and Montrose Creek project which is being developed by a partnership between Plutonic and GE Energy Financial Services. Funding for the $660 million project was completed in October of 2007, including a $470 million fully amortizing fixed rate 38 year debt facility with a consortium led by GE and Manulife and GE Capital. Construction is being undertaken by Peter Kiewit Sons Co. under a fixed price EPC Contract for $497 million. The project is expected to be online in 2010 and will result in the creation of 250 fulltime jobs over a three year term. Once operational it will generate enough electricity to meet the annual electricity needs of 75,000 while offsetting approximately 500,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
Plutonic Power’s Board of Directors has approved a budget of $25 million for 2008 to continue engineering, hydrological and permitting studies for its development projects located in the Toba and Bute Inlet areas. This permitting and feasibility study work is in preparation for the next BC Hydro call for power that is expected to be launched by the fall of 2008. Subject to the terms of the call and the results of First Nations and local community consultation, permitting and feasibility work Plutonic expects to submit a portfolio of as much as 1100 megawatts (MW) of capacity in this open, competitive process.
“As construction continues at the East Toba River/Montrose Creek project, we are concurrently rapidly advancing additional projects in our portfolio in preparation for submission into the BC Hydro call,” said Plutonic Power Vice-Chair and CEO, Donald McInnes. “Plutonic is fully committed to expending the required resources to advance our projects through a comprehensive permitting process and to ensure that local communities and First Nations are supportive of the projects. Additionally advanced stage feasibility work will provide Plutonic with a cost and schedule so that an informed competitive bid can be made once the call for tender is underway.”
“We are excited about the future of green energy in British Columbia,” said Bruce Ripley, Plutonic President and COO. “We have an unparalleled opportunity to help British Columbians achieve a broad range of objectives; securing a long term domestic low cost supply of reliable clean energy, advancement of opportunities for our First Nations partners, helping British Columbians reduce greenhouse gas emissions and creating rural economic development opportunities.”
Plutonic Power has engaged Knight Piesold engineers, Peter Kiewit Sons Ltd. to undertake detailed design, cost and project scheduling planning.
For comprehensive project listing and detailed map of site locations, please refer to the attached background document.
About Plutonic Power Corporation
Plutonic Power’s vision is to provide leadership and create a legacy through the development of renewable, reliable, made-in-BC clean energy. Its proposed Green Power Corridor, comprised of 40 facilities, including the flagship $660 million, 196 MW East Toba River/Montrose Creek run-of-river project currently under construction, have the potential to generate enough energy to meet the annual needs of about 630,000 homes and create approximately 5,500 person years of employment. Once built, the Green Power Corridor could offset an estimated 4 million tons of CO2 emissions every year – the equivalent to taking as many as 650,000 vehicles off the road. Plutonic is committed to working in partnership with First Nations, stakeholder groups and local communities in the development of all its run-of-river projects. By developing its suite of projects, Plutonic Power will help British Columbia realize its goal of becoming electricity self-sufficient by 2016, meet demand utilizing 90% clean domestic generation sources and will play a significant role in the fight against climate change.
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.
Plutonic Power’s Green Power Corridor
The Green Power Corridor is a suite of 24 actively advancing generation sites that Plutonic Power has either successfully obtained or has made an application for a water license and corresponding land tenures. Sixteen other sites with potential are also included in this area that are currently being evaluated for future consideration, for a total site portfolio of 40.
To view the map accompanying this press release please click on the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/pcc0414.jpg.
East Toba River and Montrose Creek Project
The East Toba River and Montrose Creek Project consists of two run-of-river sites, totaling 196 megawatts (MW), generating 745 GWh, which is enough energy for about 75,000 homes. With a long-term energy purchase agreement in place from the 2006 BC Hydro Call for Power, this project has been under construction since July 2007, with the expectation that the permanent camp site will be reached by late spring 2008. Commercial operation for these projects is 2010.
The Upper Toba Project
The Upper Toba Project consists of three-run-of river sites, totaling 133 MW, generating 466 GWh, which is enough electricity for about 45,000 homes. Plutonic has entered the project into the BC Environmental Assessment process and is expected to submit a formal Application to the BCEAO this spring. Detailed costing and engineering work is underway, in addition, public consultation through the EAO process and community outreach is ongoing, including with First Nations communities, on whose traditional territory the projects will be located. Plutonic intends to bid the Upper Toba Project into the BC Hydro Clean Power Call later this year.
The Bute Project
The Bute Project consists of eighteen run-of-river development sites, totaling 914 MW, generating 2980 GWh, which is enough electricity for nearly 300,000 homes. The Bute Project is expected to formally enter the BC Environmental Assessment (EAO) / Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA) permitting process this spring. Hydrology studies, engineering and project costing activities are ongoing on this series of sites, in addition to community outreach in Campbell River and consultation with First Nations communities on whose traditional territory the projects and supporting infrastructure may be located. Additional hydrology and studies to determine economics on the Bute sites will guide Plutonic’s decision on what projects to bid into the Clean Power Call.
Freda Creek Project
The Freda Creek project is a single facility, with the capacity of 36 MW, generating 115 GWh which is enough electricity for about 12,000 homes. Hydrology and environmental studies are ongoing for this site, and preliminary design and costing are complete. Plutonic has also started community consultation and First Nation consultation on this project. Freda Creek is also being evaluated for its potential to be submitted into the call process.
The TSX Exchange does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
For more information, please contact
Plutonic Power Corporation
(604) 682-3727 (FAX)
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