Bullard Energy Center (BEC)

Docket Number:

06-AFC-08 (Application For Certification)

Project Status: Proceeding Terminated; March 6, 2008

Committee that oversaw this Proceeding:

Jeffrey Byron, Commissioner, Presiding Member

Karen Douglas, Commissioner, Associate Member


Hearing Officer: Kenneth Celli

Key Dates

  • November 6, 2006 - Application for Certification (AFC) filed with California Energy Commission.
  • January 3, 2007 - Commission accepts Application for Certification (AFC) as complete.
  • August 6, 2007 - Bullard Energy Center, LLC filed request to suspend AFC.
  • February 22, 2008 - Bullard Energy Center, LLC filed request to terminate AFC.
  • March 6, 2008 - Committee Order Terminating Proceedings.


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.

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, mechanical draft cooling tower, circulating water pumps, water treatment equipment, natural gas compressors, generator step-up and auxiliary transformers, and water 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 sub-station will be on approximately 3.0 acres located on the southwest portion of the 12.3-acre site between the Herndon sub-station 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 9,500 feet 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. Two alternate routes involve 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 Facility Certification Process

The California Energy Commission is the lead agency (for licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts and larger) under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and has a certified regulatory program under CEQA. Under its certified program, the Energy Commission is exempt from having to prepare an environmental impact report. Its certified program, however, does require environmental analysis of the project, including an analysis of alternatives and mitigation measures to minimize any significant adverse effect the project may have on the environment.

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