Chula Vista Energy Upgrade Project

Docket Number:

07-AFC-04 (Application For Certification)

Project Status: Project Denied, June 17, 2009

Committee that oversaw Original Licensing Proceeding:

James D. Boyd, Vice Chair, Presiding Member

Vacant, Commissioner, Associate Member


Hearing Officer: Raoul Renaud

Key Dates

  • 8/10/2007 - Application for Certification filed with Energy Commission.
  • 9/26/2007 - Commission accepts Application for Certification (AFC) as complete.
  • 4/29/2008 - Preliminary Staff Assessment is released.
  • 8/28/2008 - Final Staff Assessment is released.
  • 1/23/2009 - Presiding Member's Proposed Decision is released.
  • 6/17/2009 - Commission votes to deny the AFC and not grant the license.


On August 10, 2007, MMC Energy, Inc. submitted an Application for Certification (AFC) to construct and operate the Chula Vista Energy Upgrade Project (CVEUP), a simple-cycle electrical power plant facility in the City of Chula Vista, San Diego County.

The proposed CVEUP would be a nominal 100-megawatt (MW) peaking facility, with construction planned to begin in the fall of 2008 and commercial operation planned by the fall of 2009. Primary equipment for the generating facility would include two General Electric (GE) Energy LM6000 natural gas-fired turbine-generators and associated equipment. The project site is located on a 3.8-acre parcel in the City of Chula Vista's Main Street Industrial Corridor and within the City's Light Industrial zoning district. The project site address is 3497 Main Street, Chula Vista, California.

This site is currently occupied by MMC's Chula Vista Power Plant, a 44.5 MW simple-cycle, natural gas-fired peaking power plant using Pratt & Whitney FT4 Twinpac technology. As part of the CVEUP, the existing power plant and pollution control equipment would be removed from the southern portion of the project parcel. The proposed plant, using GE Energy LM6000 technology, would be constructed on vacant land in the northern portion of the parcel. Some of the facilities that serve the existing plant would be reused for the new power plant. These facilities include the existing transmission connection; natural gas, water, and sanitary sewer pipelines; fencing and sound attenuation wall; utility/control building; stormwater runoff retention basin; and the 12,000-gallon aqueous ammonia storage tank and tank refilling station. Once the new plant is constructed, the existing plant would be dismantled and removed. The existing power equipment would be sold for salvage and the foundations, piping, and other equipment associated with the existing plant will be removed. The CVEUP would replace the existing older and less efficient technology with newer, more efficient, and cleaner technology.

Because the proposed CVEUP would reuse the existing electrical transmission, natural gas, water service, and sanitary sewer pipelines, the proposed project would have no offsite linear appurtenances. All connections of the CVEUP to linear facilities would be made on the existing site using the existing facilities.

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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