For Immediate Release: January 28, 2009
Media Contact: Percy Della - 916-654-4989

MEDIA ADVISORY

Riverside power project cleared for a small power plant exemption

Sacramento -- The city of Riverside's proposal to add two generators to an existing city-owned power plant has been recommended for a small power plant exemption (SPPE).

The recommendation was contained in a document released today by the head of a California Energy Commission committee reviewing the city's SPPE application.

In a presiding member's proposed decision (PMPD), Commissioner Karen Douglas said the planned project would pose no significant environmental impacts and it is eligible by law for an SPPE. The generators would add another 95 megawatts to the city's existing 96-megawatt Riverside Energy Center. The PMPD is NOT a final decision on the project. The document will now be available for 21 days of public comment before it is brought before the full Commission.

The PMPD concurred with staff's Final Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration on the proposed plant and said these documents were prepared in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act and all applicable Commission and State guidelines.

According to the PMPD, mitigation measures and conditions of exemption on air quality, water use and potential noise impacts, will enable the city to put the generator in place and operate them without direct, indirect and cumulative detriment to public health and safety and the transmission system.

If a power plant proposal is between 50 and 100 megawatts, the Commission may exempt it from its yearlong review process under an SPPE. However, the Commission must first find that a proposed plant would result in no substantial adverse impacts to the environment or energy resources.

With an SPPE, an applicant will be responsible for obtaining all necessary local, state, and federal permits to build and operate a proposed power plant. Local and state agencies would use the Energy Commission's environmental document (the Final Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration) when issuing their respective permits in line with the California Environmental Quality Act.

More information on the Riverside SPPE application is available at:

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

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