PROJECTS AND CONTRACTS
Calpine to power Wisconsin: Calpine Corp. announced that its wholly owned subsidiary SkyGen Energy LLC has entered into an agreement to supply Alliant Energy’s Wisconsin Power & Light Co. with 453 MW of electric capacity and energy from SkyGen’s new $350 million facility, RiverGen Energy Center. The Center, to be fueled by natural gas, will incorporate two combustion turbines and one steam turbine. Construction is expected to begin this year, with commercial operation starting in 2003.
Generators look for financial options: Reliant Energy, Dynegy and Mirant announced they are forming a creditors committee to explore options for receiving payment by the California Independent System Operator (ISO) and California’s investor-owned utilities. The group’s move is in response to the “slow progress toward the implementation of a comprehensive long-term solution,” according to a statement.
Mexico gives Sempra OK: Mexico’s Energy Regulatory Commission issued a natural gas transportation permit to the international subsidiary of Sempra Energy for the construction of the 135-mile Mexican segment of the North Baja Pipeline project. Sempra and PG&E Corp. are developing the $230 million, 215-mile Arizona-to-Mexico pipeline.
Southwestern to develop station: SouthWestern Power Group II, a Phoenix-based energy resource development company, announced plans to build the Bowie Power Station, a new generation facility expected to produce 1,000 MW at full capacity. Construction is slated for late 2002, with the first two units in operation in early 2004.
BPA eyes geothermal: The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), in consultation with the Department of Energy, has signed an agreement with Calpine Corp. to buy more than 49 MW of electricity from the Fourmile Hill geothermal project in Northern California. The purchase is contingent on Calpine finding a commercially developable source of steam at the site.
InterGen breaks ground: InterGen announced the financial close of credit facilities for and the groundbreaking of the Cottonwood Energy project, a 1200 MW natural gas-fired, combined cycle power plant. Bechtel Power will build the facility, which is expected to begin commercial operations by mid 2003.
Pepco and Conectiv join forces: Potomac Electric Power Co. (Pepco) and Conectiv have approved a merger agreement allowing Pepco to acquire Conectiv for a combination of cash and stock valued at approximately $2.2 billion. Both companies will become subsidiaries of a new holding company to be named at a later date. This combination will create the largest electricity delivery company in the mid-Atlantic PJM region, serving nearly two million customers in Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey and Virginia. Based on the number of common shares currently outstanding, Pepco stockholders will own approximately 67 percent of the common equity of the combined company, and Conectiv stockholders will own approximately 33 percent.
UtiliCorp completes merger: UtiliCorp United announced that its merger with St. Joseph Light & Power Co. closed on New Year’s Eve. Under the terms of the agreement, St. Joseph Light & Power shareholders will receive 0.7933 shares of UtiliCorp common stock for each share of Light & Power stock held as of December 29, 2000.
Cinergy gives nod to Enron: Cinergy Corp. announced that Cinergy Capital & Trading Inc., a non-regulated affiliate of Cinergy Corp, and Enron North America have signed a definitive agreement allowing Cinergy Capital to purchase two natural gas-fired merchant electric generating facilities located in the Southeast. The transaction will increase Cinergy’s generation portfolio to about 21,000 MW; financial terms were not disclosed.
LEGAL AND REGULATORY
Great River wishes to explore: Great River Energy has filed a grant application with the North Dakota Industrial Commission requesting $10 million in matching funds to perform detailed feasibility studies which may lead to the construction of a new $700 million, 500 MW lignite-fired power plant. They expect results by mid-2003.
Avista seeks conservation: Avista Corp. has filed a request with Washington and Idaho state regulators to implement a special tariff of 0.5 percent to provide funding for natural gas energy-efficiency programs. The proposed programs fall into three categories: traditional energy conservation, limited income assistance and market transformation. The proposed annual budget for all three is $800,000.
Navigant to conduct auction: Navigant Consulting Inc. announced that it has been selected by Sithe/Independence Power Partners LP to conduct an auction of a tolling agreement for all or a portion of the electrical output of the 1,040 MW Independence Station, a natural gas-fired, combined cycle electric generating facility located in Scriba, New York. Navigant has also been selected to solicit bids for a transmission congestion contract for up to 853 MW of contract demand between the Independence Station busbar and the Pleasant Valley substation.