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On November 6, 2006, Bullard Energy Center, LLC, submitted an Application for Certification (AFC) to construct and operate a simple-cycle electrical generating facility, the Bullard Energy Center (BEC), in Fresno, California.

Project Description

The proposed BEC project would be a simple-cycle electrical generating facility located in Fresno. The BEC project will have a nominal electrical output of 200 megawatts (MW) with construction planned to start in 2008 and commercial operation planned by summer 2009. The project is proposed as a 12-month AFC. The applicant has a 20-year contract with Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) as a result of the 2004 PG&E Request for Offers for new generation resources. The BEC is designed as a peaking facility to meet electric generation load during periods of high demand, which generally occur during daytime hours, and more frequently during the summer than other portions of the year. The project is expected to have an annual capacity factor of no higher than 57 percent, depending on weather and customer demand, load growth, hydroelectric supplies, generation retirements and replacements, the level of generating unit and transmission outages, and other factors. The generating facility will include two General Electric (GE) LMS100 natural gas-fired combustion turbine generators (CTGs), inlet air filters with evaporative coolers, turbine compressor section inter-cooler, air pollution control equipment, mechanical draft cooling tower, circulating water pumps, water treatment equipment, natural gas compressors, generator step-up and auxiliary transformers, a water storage tank, and an aqueous ammonia storage tank.

The proposed BEC plant site, a 12.3-acre parcel (Assessors Parcel Number 505-080-22S), is located approximately 1.25 miles southeast of the intersection of Herndon Avenue and North Golden State Boulevard, at 5829 North Golden State Boulevard, in the City of Fresno. This parcel is zoned M-1 (light industrial use) and is located in an industrial area. A truck depot and construction equipment fabrication and storage yard are currently located on this site. The plant site will be leased and/or purchased at the option of BEC. There will also be a temporary construction laydown and parking site on a 9.2-acre parcel located immediately to the north of the plant site.

A new 230 kV looping substation will be constructed on-site, tying into the east side of the existing PG&E Herndon-Kearney 230 kV line, which runs from south to north across the southwest corner of the site. This new substation will be on approximately 3.0 acres located on the southwest portion of the 12.3-acre site between the Herndon substation to the north, and the Kearney substation to the south. Approximately two miles of the existing 230 kV transmission line will require re-conductoring.

The project will connect to a PG&E natural gas pipeline approximately 1.8 miles west of the site. The primary pipeline route will convey gas via a new pipeline up to 12 inches in diameter along West Bullard Avenue to North Golden State Boulevard, and then south to the site. An alternate route involves the same PG&E gas connection location, running north along North Garfield Avenue to Herndon Avenue, then south along North Golden State Boulevard and North Weber Street to the site.

A Fresno city water main located near the southeast corner of the site along North Golden State Boulevard will be extended approximately 300 feet, to the northeast corner of the site.

Wastewater from the site will be conveyed via an approximate 14-inch diameter, 1,500-foot sewer line proceeding northwest along North Golden State Boulevard, tying into the existing 54-inch City of Fresno trunk line, just north of the intersection of North Golden State Boulevard and West Bullard Avenue.

Air emissions from the proposed facility would be controlled using best available control technology applied to each engine's exhaust. Each of the two GE LMS100 natural gas-fired CTGs will be equipped with water injection to the combustors for reducing production of NOx, a selective catalytic reduction system with 19 percent ammonia injection to further reduce NOx emissions and an oxidation catalyst to reduce carbon monoxide emissions. Final permitting by the Energy Commission would reflect conformance with rules and regulations of the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District and include the issuance of a Determination of Compliance from the District.

Energy Commission's Facility Certification Process

The Energy Commission is responsible for reviewing and ultimately approving or denying all applications to construct and operate thermal electric power plants, 50 MW and greater, in California. The Energy Commission's facility certification process carefully examines public health and safety, environmental impacts and engineering aspects of proposed power plants, and all related facilities such as electric transmission lines and natural gas and water pipelines. The Energy Commission is the lead agency under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), but produces several environmental and decision documents rather than an Environmental Impact Report.

The first step in the review process is for Energy Commission staff to determine whether or not the AFC contains all the information required by our regulations. When the AFC is deemed data adequate, we will begin data discovery and issue analysis phases. At that time, a detailed examination of the issues will occur.

Public Participation

Over the coming months, the Energy Commission will conduct a number of public workshops and hearings on the proposal to determine whether the project should be approved for construction and operation and under what set of conditions. These workshops will provide the public as well as local, state and federal agencies the opportunity to ask questions about, and provide input on, the proposed project. The Energy Commission will issue notices for these workshops and hearings at least 10 days prior to the meeting.

Please direct your technical or project schedule questions to Mary Dyas, Energy Commission Project Manager, at (916) 651-8891, or by e-mail at mdyas@energy.state.ca.us. If you desire information on participating in the Energy Commission's review of the project, please contact Ms. Margret Kim, the Energy Commission's Public Adviser, at (916) 654-4489 or toll free in California, at (800) 822-6228. The Public Adviser's Office can also be contacted via email at pao@energy.state.ca.us. The status of the project, copies of notices, an electronic version of the AFC, and other relevant documents are also available on the Energy Commission's Internet web site at: http://www.energy.ca.gov/sitingcases/bullard/. You can also subscribe to receive e-mail notification of all notices at http://www.energy.ca.gov/listservers/index.html.

This notice of receipt has been mailed to all parties that requested placement on the mailing list during the pre-filing period and to property owners located within 1000 feet of the project site and 500 feet of the transmission line. By being on the mailing list, you will receive notices of all project-related activities and notices when documents related to the project's evaluation are available for review. If you want your name removed from the mailing list, please contact Joann Gonzales, Project Secretary, at (916) 653-1640, or by e-mail at jgonzale@energy.state.ca.us.

Availability of the AFC Document

Copies of the AFC are available for public inspection at the following Fresno County public libraries:

Fresno Central Library
2420 Mariposa Street
Fresno, CA 93721

Fig Garden Regional Library
3071 West Bullard Avenue
Fresno, CA 93711

Gillis Branch Library
629 West Dakota Avenue
Fresno, CA 93705

Pinedale Branch Library
7170 North San Pablo Avenue
Pinedale, CA 93650

Copies are also available at the Energy Commission's Library in Sacramento, the California State Library in Sacramento, and at public libraries in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, and Eureka. In addition, copies will be distributed to those public agencies that would normally have jurisdiction except for the Energy Commission's exclusive authority to certify sites and related facilities.

Date Posted: November 14, 2006 Sincerely,

Roger E. Johnson, Manager
Energy Facilities Siting and Compliance Office

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