The Department of Energy (DOE) on Tuesday issued its first loan guarantee for a transmission project, committing $343 million to develop the One Nevada Transmission Line (ON Line) project. Jointly owned by Great Basin Transmission South and NV Energy, the proposed 500 kV AC transmission line is expected to carry 600 MW nearly 235 miles from Ely, Nev., to just north of Las Vegas.

The DOE said the funds would “help integrate existing transmission systems in northern and southern Nevada, improving grid reliability and efficiency.” Energy Secretary Steven Chu also said the project would play a “vital role in moving clean energy from one region to another."

The $500 million ON Line represents the first phase of the Southwest Intertie Project (SWIP), which, when completed, should carry approximately 2,000 MW of electricity and enable wind and solar resources in Wyoming, Idaho, and Nevada to power the Southwest and California markets.

The DOE highlighted an estimation from project sponsors that that the ON Line project will contract about 85% of its parts and labor from U.S. companies and will create approximately 400 construction jobs.

Sources: DOE, POWERnews