Calpine Gilroy
Emergency Peaker Project

Docket Number:

01-EP-08 (Application For Certification)
01-EP-8C (Compliance Proceeding)

Project Status: Licensed; In Compliance Phase.
Operational: Units 1 & 2 - January 29, 2002.
Unit 3 - February 20, 2002.

Applicant: Calpine Corporation

Location: Gilroy, Calif., Santa Clara County

Size: 135 Megawatt Peaking Power Plant


Calpine Corporation (Calpine) proposes to build and operate a 135-megawatt (MW) nominal output simple cycle combustion turbine generating facility in the City of Gilroy, Santa Clara County. The proposed facility, the Gilroy Phase 1 Project, is located adjacent to Calpine's Gilroy Co-Gen facility at 1350 Pacheco Pass Highway. See Figures 1-1 and 1-2 for the location of the Gilroy Phase 1 Project.

Project Owner/Operator

Name: Bryan J. Bertacchi, PE
Title: Vice President, Western Region Operations Calpine Corporation
Address: 6700 Koll Center Parkway, Suite 200
Pleasanton, CA 94566
Phone No.: (925) 600-2033

Overview Of Power Plant And Linear Facilities

Calpine is proposing the Gilroy Phase 1 Project in response to the state of emergency declared by Governor Davis on January 17, 2001 and several executive orders issued on February 8, 2001. Specifically, the Governor identified a goal of bringing 1,000 MW of new generating capacity on-line to meet peak demand. Executive Order D-26-01 directs the California Energy Commission (CEC) to expedite the review and approval of peaking projects that can be on-line by September 30, 2001. All such proposals are considered emergency projects under Public Resources Code section 21080(b)(4). The CEC emergency permitting process includes a 21-day review and approval period for a qualified project once an application is deemed complete. Due to these emergency conditions, the project is not intended to conform to the 12-year forecast of electric power demands adopted pursuant to California Public Resources Code Sec. 25305(e).

Calpine corporation is considering the merits of two distinct projects that could be located at the Gilroy site. The first project consists of three gas turbines that would begin operating by September 30, 2001. As a result, the application for this first project is being submitted under the CEC's 21-day process. The second project being contemplated would add three more gas turbines to the existing site, for a total of six peaking turbines; however, the proposed second project would not begin operating until after this summer. Accordingly, this second project would require Calpine to submit an application for consideration under the CEC's four-month process.

The Gilroy Phase 1 Project will consist of three 45-MW, natural-gas-fired simple-cycle peaking turbines and associated equipment located on 7-acres of existing agricultural land adjacent to the existing Gilroy Co-Gen facility. The Gilroy Phase 1 Project requires no new linear facilities. The project will interconnect to PG&E's electricity transmission system through a radial tap to PG&E's 115-kV transmission line located on the site. Natural gas will be provided through a connection to the existing PG&E gas supply located in Route 152 (Pacheco Pass Highway). The Project will obtain raw water through a connection with the existing site's well-water pumps or reclaimed water from the South County Regional Wastewater Authority's reclaimed water facility (if available). The existing site wells have sufficient capacity to supply a total of six simple-cycle peaking power plants. On-site trailer-mounted or skid-mounted water treatment (reverse-osmosis and de-mineralization) units will provide de-mineralized water on demand for turbine injection and cooling. Wastewater will be discharged either Gilroy Foods or directly to the City of Gilroy sewer system.

Energy Commission Facility Certification Process

The California Energy Commission is the lead agency (for licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts and larger) under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and has a certified regulatory program under CEQA. Under its certified program, the Energy Commission is exempt from having to prepare an environmental impact report. Its certified program, however, does require environmental analysis of the project, including an analysis of alternatives and mitigation measures to minimize any significant adverse effect the project may have on the environment.

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