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For Immediate Release: May 16, 2008
Media Contact: Percy Della - 916-654-4989

M E D I A     A D V I S O R Y

Site visit and info hearing for the proposed Avenal Energy project in
Kings County to be held on May 20th


The California Energy Commission has scheduled a site visit and informational hearing for the proposed 600-megawatt Avenal Energy project in Kings County. The public is invited to attend.

When: Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Bus leaves for the site visit at 4:30 p.m.
The public informational hearing begins at 5:30 p.m.

Where:
City of Avenal Recreation Center, 717 E. Monterey Street Avenal, California

Who:
Commissioner Jeffrey Byron, the head of the committee that will ensure that the project meets the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act will lead the site visit and informational hearing. These steps are the first in a formal process that allows the public, governmental agencies and other interested parties to participate in the review of the planned power plant.

What:
Project owner Avenal Power Center, LLC of Houston, Texas plans to develop the Avenal Energy project on 25 acres of a 148-acre site zoned for industrial use just south of the Fresno County line and two miles east of Interstate 5. The proposed project is six miles from the City of Avenal's residential and commercial districts.

The plant would use a dry cooling process with a zero liquid discharge system to cut water use and avoid dumping waste water altogether. The City of Avenal would provide water to the proposed project from the city's water treatment plant adjacent to the site. Groundwater from three local wells would provide a back-up water source to the project via two separate pipelines.

Why:
If licensed by the Energy Commission, the $530-million power facility will begin construction in April 2010, with initial startup in October 2011 and full commercial operation by June 2012.

Throughout the project's 12-month licensing review, the Energy Commission will conduct public workshops and hearings in Kings County on the proposed plant to determine whether it should be certified for a license and under what set of conditions.

More information on the Avenal Energy project is available on the Energy Commission website at:

http://www.energy.ca.gov/sitingcases/avenal/

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