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JERUSALEM, Jan 23 (Reuters) - Israel's Ormat Industries warned of a fourth-quarter loss after its U.S. unit said it would record a pre-tax charge of up to $230 million for the impairment to the company's power plant in California.
Ormat, a producer of geothermal energy, expects to post a provision for impairment of $140-$150 million - $110 million for its California plant and another $30-$40 million for a second plant in Nevada, it said in a statement to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.
"The net impact after tax from these provisions will be a substantial decline in the company's net profit, which will bring the company to a loss for the year and the fourth quarter," Ormat said.
Its unit, Ormat Technologies said its North Brawley, California geothermal field has been much more difficult to operate than other fields, and the power plant has been unable to reach its design capacity of 50 MW. It has instead been operating at capacities between 20 MW and 33 MW.
"This generation level has been achieved following significant additional capital expenditures and higher than anticipated operating costs," the company said.