For Immediate Release: January 22, 1999
Media Contact: Claudia Chandler -- 916 654-4989

Energy Commission's Siting Committee
Issues Conditions for Licensing
Sutter Power Project

Sacramento -- If Calpine can meet two remaining requirements, the proposed 500-megawatt natural gas-fired, combined cycle Sutter Power Project facility will pass the many tests required for the construction and operation of power plants in California, says an Energy Commission Siting Committee.

With these additional approvals, the Committee, comprised of Energy Commissioner Michal (spelled correctly) C. Moore, Presiding Member and Chairman William J. Keese, Associate Member, recommends the Sutter Power Project for licensing.

In its Presiding Member's Proposed Decision, the Committee says that the project must gain the Sutter County Board of Supervisors' approval of Calpine's request for a general plan amendment to change the site's land-use designation from agricultural to industrial.

Additionally, Calpine must show that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will grant permission for the project's pipeline to be built within the Sutter National Wildlife Refuge.

The plant is proposed for South Township Road near Best Road, adjacent to Calpine's existing Unit #1 Cogeneration Plant, a 49.5-megawatt natural gas-fueled cogeneration facility. Additional project facilities include a four mile, 230 kilovolt, overhead electric transmission line that would be built from the plant to a new switching station on O'Banion Road, and a 14.9 mile natural gas pipeline that would cross the Sutter National Wildlife Refuge.

The Committee's recommendation, contained in the Presiding Member's Proposed Decision, is subject to approval by the full five-member Energy Commission.

In its 340-page Proposed Decision, the Committee reviewed the Sutter Power Project in 28 separate topics including environmental impacts, public health and safety, air quality, hazardous materials, alternatives and engineering.

The Committee found that the 165 Conditions of Certification specified in the Presiding Member's Proposed Decision will ensure that the Sutter Power Project will not impose a significant adverse impact on the environment.

Members of the public have until February 19, 1999, to comment on the Proposed Decision. A final decision by the Commission on the proposed project is expected in March.

An additional hearing to receive public comment on the Presiding Member's Proposed Decision will be held on February 11, 1999, beginning at 10 a.m., in the Veterans Memorial Community Building in Yuba City.

The California Energy Commission is responsible for reviewing all thermal power plants 50 megawatts and larger. The Commission's review process includes a comprehensive and objective analysis of all issues including but not limited to public health and safety, air quality, hazardous materials, environmental impacts, engineering design and need specified in the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and based on the evidence presented after formal public hearings.

The Presiding Member's Proposed Decision on the Sutter Power Plant Project is available on the Energy Commission's Web Site at:

Note to Editors: The nine-page Executive Summary portion of the Presiding Member's Proposed Decision is also available, via fax, from the Energy Commission's Media and Communications Office. Contact Claudia Chandler, Assistant Executive Director at (916) 654-4989.

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