Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Electricity from Volcanoes in Guatemala
Solar, wind, wave power, tidal power, ethanol: plenty of green sources of energy, But now there is a new one: volcanoes! Technically, volcanoes fall under the category of geothermal power, but they aren't your typical hole-in-the-ground geothermal wells.
Ormat Technologies (ORA) has tapped into the Pacaya volcano in Guatemala. The country's goal is to have 60% of its energy generated from volcanoes, along with hydro power. Guatemala isn't the only country tapping into this source of power. There are plenty of other Central American countries jumping on the bandwagon, including Costa Rica, El Salvador, and Nicaragua.
Ormat is the big player in the geothermal field. This $1.3 billion market cap company has a price to earnings ratio of 34 and pays a small yield of 0.7%. The company carries a debt load of about $700 million, and has $54 million in cash.
Other stocks that generate electricity from geothermal include PG&E Corp. (PCG) the California-based electric and gas utility that serves 5 million customers. The company's electrical generation comes from geothermal, natural gas, nuclear, hydro, coal, wind, and several other types of renewable sources. The P/E is 15 and the PEG is 1.94. The stock yields 4%.
IdaCorp, Inc. (IDA) is a holding company that owns Idaho Power Company, which is involved in the generation, transmission, distribution, and sale of electric energy primarily in southern Idaho and eastern Oregon. Their electrical generation comes from geothermal, hydroelectric, natural gas, diesel, and coal plants. The P/E is 12 and the stock yields 3.4%.
If you like utility stocks, WallStreetNewsNetwork.com has turned up over 15 electric utilities with yields above 5%.
Disclosure: Author does not own any of the above at the time the article was written.