Calpine pushes back start of Guadalupe power plant project by one year

LCRA Transmission Services Corp. on Dec. 8 filed with the Texas Public Utility Commission a revision to a generation interconnection agreement with the Guadalupe Peaking Energy Center affiliate of Calpine Corp. for a 454 MW project in Guadalupe County, Texas.

The revision includes a one-year delay, from the original June 1, 2017, to a new date of June 1, 2018, as the target date for commercial operation of this project.

Said the original agreement: “The Plant is a simple cycle combustion turbine facility with two Points of Interconnection to the grid. The Plant maximum winter rating will be about 454 MW of AC power at 0 degrees F at the Points of Interconnection. The Plant will consist of 454 MW from 2 simple cycle gas turbines.” These two turbines are the General Electric 7FA.05 model.

Said Calpine in its Oct. 30 quarterly Form 10-Q report: “In April 2015, we executed an agreement with Guadalupe Valley Electric Cooperative (‘GVEC’) that will facilitate the construction of a 418 MW natural gas-fired peaking power plant to be co-located with our Guadalupe Energy Center.

Under the terms of the agreement, construction of the Guadalupe Peaking Energy Center (‘GPEC’) may commence at our discretion, so long as the power plant reaches COD between the dates of June 1, 2017, and June 1, 2019.

When the power plant begins commercial operation, GVEC will purchase a 50 percent ownership interest in GPEC. Once built, GPEC will feature two fast-ramping combustion turbines capable of responding to peaks in power demand. This project represents a mutually beneficial response to our customer’s desire to have direct access to peaking generation resources, as it leverages the benefits of our existing site and development rights and our construction and operating expertise, as well as our customer’s ability to fund its investment at attractive rates, all while affording us the flexibility of timing the plant’s construction in response to market pricing signals.

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Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy's Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication's editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor's degree from Central Michigan University.

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