Calpine Plans New Texas Cogen; Adds California Plant
Calpine Corp., Texas' largest independent power producer,
announced plans last week to build, own and operate an 800 MW
natural gas-fired cogeneration power plant at Bayer Corp.'s
chemical facility in Baytown, TX. Permitting for the $335 million
facility is under way, the company said. The plant is expected to
begin commercial operation in late 2001.
At the same time the company said it has completed the purchase
of development rights from Enron Corp. for a 500 MW facility under
construction in Pittsburg, CA.
The Texas facility, which is expected to burn 135 MMcf/d, will
employ three Siemens Westinghouse Power Corp. 501F combustion
turbines, allowing it to run at increased efficiency, Calpine said.
"Compared to the average older gas-fired power plant in operation
today, Baytown will use up to 40% less natural gas," said Diana
Taylor, Calpine's senior vice president. "And by utilizing the
latest generation in combined-cycle combustion turbine design and
advanced emissions control systems, we can significantly reduce
emissions compared to older plants."
The company said the plant will generate 700 MW of electricity
under baseload conditions and will have the ability to add 100 MW
of peaking power during hot summer months.
The Baytown plant will supply Bayer with all of its electric and
steam requirements for 20 years. with excess power sold into the
ERCOT wholesale power market under a variety of short-, mid-, and
long-term contracts, the company said.
The Baytown plant will be the newest addition to Calpine's
central region power system. The San Jose, CA-based company already
has six power plants (three in operation and three under
construction) in the state. All of them are gas-fired. Once all of
the plants are completed, they will burn a combined 610 MMcf/d to
produce a total of 3,700 MW.
"We have power plants in operation, under construction, or
planned in 14 states," said Jimmy Glotfelty, a Calpine spokesman.
"But Texas is our core area for gas-fired generation. We might
generate more electricity in California, but we have geo-thermal
and hydro assets doing a lot of the work. Texas is clearly where
our gas-fired focus is, and we hope to expand it." Glotfelty added
that all the gas Calpine uses to fire these plants is bought from
nearby pipeline systems or supplied from the Sheridan Energy
system, which Calpine bought last summer.
Overall, the company currently has approximately 9,800 MW in
operation, pending acquisition, under construction or in announced
development. Calpine's goal is to reach 16,000 MW by 2003,
Calpine said it has completed the transaction for the purchase
of development rights to build, own and operate the Pittsburg, CA,
plant from Enron. The 500 MW Los Medanos Energy Center (formerly
called the Pittsburg District Energy Facility) recently was
licensed by the California Energy Commission after a comprehensive
year-long environmental and technical review. Construction of the
$350 million facility is underway.
The San Jose, CA-based Calpine expects to begin energy
deliveries in July 2001 for the peak summer demand season.
Kiewit Industrial of Omaha, NE, is building the facility on a
12-acre site adjacent to USS POSCO Industries' steel mill. As a
cogenerator, Los Medanos will provide USS POSCO with 60 MW of
electricity and 75,000 pounds per hour of steam for use in
industrial processing. Calpine will sell the remaining 450 MW of
electricity to California's power exchange and under bilateral
Calpine currently has another project under development in
Pittsburg at the Dow Chemical plant. The Delta Energy Center, a
joint venture with Bechtel Enterprises, will generate approximately
880 MW, plus steam for sale to Dow and to California's deregulated