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For immediate release: July 22, 2002
Media Contact: Chris Davis - 916-654-4989

Energy Commission Releases Early Evaluation of Plans For Inland Empire Energy Center
Calpine Facility Proposed For Riverside County Near Hemet, Perris and Romoland

Sacramento - The staff of the California Energy Commission cannot recommend licensing at this time for the Inland Empire Energy Center due to an incomplete air quality offset package. That conclusion is part of the Preliminary Staff Assessment of the 670-megawatt power plant proposed by Calpine that is now available on the Energy Commission website at:
www.energy.ca.gov/sitingcases/inlandempire/documents/

The Preliminary Staff Assessment does not recommend licensing the project at this time because the staff of the Energy Commission and South Coast Air Quality Management District found that additional emission offsets for oxides of nitrogen (NOx), carbon monoxide (CO), PM 10 and sulfur oxides (SOx) will be required from Calpine.

The Preliminary Staff Assessment is a draft document. It is not an Energy Commission decision or proposed decision on the Inland Empire Energy Center. It is the staff's preliminary analysis of the project based on a review of the power plant proposal in accordance with the Public Resources Code and California Environmental Quality Act. The staff will hold one or more public workshops in mid-August to take comments and suggestions on this report. Workshop notices will go out when details are finalized. In addition, the Staff will continue to gather information for a Final Staff Assessment planned for release in late September.

The Inland Empire Energy Center is proposed by Calpine for a 46-acre parcel in Riverside County near Romoland, six miles west of the city of Hemet and four miles east of the city of Perris. If it is licensed by the Energy Commission, the natural gas-fired, combined-cycle facility would utilize two combustion-turbine generators, two heat recovery steam generators and a steam turbine to produce 670 megawatts.

An oxidation catalyst would limit carbon monoxide (CO) emissions, and selective catalytic reduction would reduce emissions of oxides of nitrogen (NOx). Power from the plant would be delivered to Southern California Edison's Valley Substation via a new 500-kilovolt transmission line. The plant would use up to 5,000 acre-feet of water per year. During the first five years, approximately 80% of the supply will be recycled water from the Eastern Municipal Water District. After five years, the plant is projected to use 100% recycled water. In addition, a natural gas compressor station would be built as part of the project, about a mile southeast of the Inland Empire Energy Center.

Public input is an important part of California's power plant certification process. To find out how to get involved, contact the Energy Commission's Public Adviser, Roberta Mendonca, at (916) 654-4489, toll free at (800) 822-6228, or by e-mail at [pao@energy.state.ca.us].

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