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For Immediate Release: April 15, 2004
Contact: Chris Davis   916-654-4989


Committee Recommends Approving Fresno County Power Project

Sacramento-The Committee responsible for considering whether to exempt the Kings River Conservation District Peaking Plant from the California Energy Commission review process recommends that the exemption be granted. The Committee's Proposed Decision and Mitigated Negative Declaration released today finds that the project poses no unmitigated impacts to the environment, public health or energy resources.

The proposed facility will add desired power to the grid where it is needed in the Fresno area at times of peak demand. Two natural gas-fired turbines provided to the State to settle charges against the Williams Marketing and Trading Company, that resulted from the company's actions during the 2001 California energy crisis, will generate electricity. The energy will be sold under a power purchase agreement to the California Department of Water Resources.

The proposed decision for the Kings River Conservation District Peaking Project is available on the Energy Commission's website at:

www.energy.ca.gov/sitingcases/kingsriver/documents

The Kings River Conservation District is a public agency whose mission is to provide flood protection, supply water and develop power resources.The District is seeking approval to build the simple-cycle, 97-megawatt power plant near the community of Malaga, in unincorporated Fresno County. The proposal is being considered under the Energy Commission's Small Power Plant Exemption process. The Commission is allowed to exempt power plants of up to 100 megawatts from its standard licensing process if the staff's analysis finds that construction and operation of a facility would not result in adverse impacts to the environment, public health and safety, or energy resources.

If the Energy Commission approves the proposed decision and grants the exemption, the District will be responsible for obtaining the necessary permits to build and operate the power plant. Local, state and federal agencies would then use the Energy Commission's environmental document to issue their respective permits.

Written comments on the proposed decision must be received no later than May 13, 2004 by the Siting Committee for the Kings River Conservation District Peaking Plant. Comments must be addressed to:

Major Williams
Kings River Conservation District Peaking Plant
California Energy Commission
1516 Ninth Street, MS-9
Sacramento, California 95814

The Committee will also hold a public conference to receive comments on:

Tuesday, May 4, 2004
Beginning at 8:30 a.m.
California Energy Commission
Hearing Room A
1516 Ninth Street
Sacramento, Calfornia
(Wheelchair Accessible)

Public participation is an important part of the Energy Commission's power plant review process. For more information on how to submit comments and participate in the case, contact the Commission's Public Adviser, Margret J. Kim, at (916) 654-4489, toll free at (800) 822-6228, or by e-mail at:

pao@energy.state.ca.us

The proposed decision is scheduled to be presented to the Energy Commission for a vote at the Business Meeting on May 19, 2004. If approved, the document will be used by the appropriate agencies to issue the permits needed to construct the project.

Reporter notes:
Media inquiries should be addressed to Chris Davis at (916) 654-4989.

The Energy Commission is constantly updating the media database to which we send news releases and media advisories. Members of the media who wish to be added to the database, have their contact information updated, or deleted, should send an e-mail to:

mediaoffice@energy.state.ca.us

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