Summit has relationships with a large number of load serving utility entities and several of the larger industrial consumers of not only energy but industrial products like urea and ammonia as well as CO2 for enhanced oil recovery (EOR). Summit’s marketing experience and network of contacts include development relationships, power sales and gas fuel management relationships, financing relationships, equipment supply relationships and operations relationships. Summit’s founders, Don Hodel, former Secretary of Energy and Interior and BPA Administrator and Earl Gjelde, former Chief Operating Officer of the Department of Energy and Deputy BPA Administrator, have a long standing public power background, and Summit therefore is particularly known for its expertise with public power entities and its ability to provide low-cost, flexible power options for that sector. In addition, Summit personnel have worked for numerous IOUs and POUs and other IPP’s, giving the firm relationships throughout the sector.
TECHNOLOGY PROVIDERS AND CONSTRUCTORS
Summit has developed a model for gas project development, contracting and construction that seeks to optimize costs, risk mitigation for the owner, quality and speed to market. This approach, along with Summit’s flexible position relating to project ownership and transaction structure, offers valuable relationships that are adjustable to meet various applications. Summit has been short listed on two significant natural gas development projects in major utility RFP’s processes since mid-2011. Summit has utilized its optimization model successfully with engineering and construction firm CH2M Hill to provide value to utility buyers in the highly competitive market for new gas–fired generation facilities. The Summit approach to gas power project development, including unique and highly customized development teams and financing tailored to each project, endeavors to ensure the lowest possible cost for project owners and buyers.
Summit, along with the REC Group (REC), a world leading solar technology manufacturing company, formed NorthLight Power, LLC to develop and finance reliable, low cost utility scale solar photovoltaic (PV) resources principally in the desert southwest. REC is the world’s largest manufacturer of polysilicon for solar applications, and the world’s largest producer of wafers for the solar industry.
CO2 Capture Technology
Summit is actively evaluating CO2 capture technologies from some of the world’s leading technology companies. Summit has built a reputation as one of the most sophisticated developers of CO2 capture projects, and therefore is sought out by many companies developing advanced capture systems. Our focus with this work is on building strong relationships where we can help to bring forward new CO2 capture technologies in our SCC-owned or developed projects. Summit has the unique combination of skills needed to commercially develop a “first of kind” technology or project. We are currently evaluating technologies for newly built power plants, for retrofitting existing power plants, and for capturing CO2 directly from the atmosphere.
Summit has excellent relationships with the financial community and is expert in complex project finance structures. Since 2010, Summit has participated in or is active in over $3.5 billion of financings and has a staff of full-time finance professionals working on its own and its client’s projects. Summit’s relationships with multiple financing entities allow it to bring significant experience in the arranging and structuring of construction debt and equity investments, long term take – out financing and the structuring and issuance of taxable or tax – exempt bonds. Summit has pioneered innovative approaches to finance, including the White Creek wind project (tax exempt pre-paid renewable energy) financing, which was recognized by the US Department of Energy with the Public Power Wind Pioneer Award. The project was also nominated for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Wind Cooperative Deal of the Year Award.
ENVIRONMENTAL AND GOVERNMENTAL RELATIONSHIPS
Summit has established a reputation nationally and locally for environmentally responsible power project development as well as strong governmental and Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) relationships.
Summit personnel are seen as environmental leaders and speak frequently about environmental matters impacting the energy sector and on environmentally sound energy development. Summit is able to work with its clients and on its own projects more effectively because of its credibility on environmental matters.
Summit’s ability to engage constructively with public and non-profit entities is perhaps best exemplified by its experience with TCEP. In light of the concerns surrounding the management and storage of the project’s large volumes of captured CO2, Summit has voluntarily committed to create a Carbon Management Advisory Board to help advise the company and inform the public on its activities. Environmental groups with international influence, such as the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Clean Air Task Force and the Environmental Defense Fund, have consistently expressed public support for the Project. Notably, TCEP was awarded its air permit with no opposition from environmental groups or others and without even a request for a hearing.
Several of Summit’s key personnel come from the public sector, including a former US Secretary of Interior and Secretary of Energy and Deputy US Secretary of Energy, a former BPA Administrator and a former director at the National Commission on Energy Policy.