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On May 27, 2005, the California Energy Commission received a petition from the Calpine Otay Mesa Energy Center LLC to modify the Otay Mesa Energy Center (OMEC) Project. The 510-megawatt project was certified in April 2001. The Energy Commission approved the sale of the project from PG&E Generating to Calpine Corporation in October 2001. Construction was initiated on June 11, 2004, and the project is approximately 9 percent complete. The facility is located in the Otay Mesa area of the County of San Diego, approximately 15 miles southeast of the City of San Diego.


Otay Mesa Energy Center LLC is seeking approval to:

  1. Adjust the planned routing of the northern portion of the natural gas supply pipeline 95 feet to the east between the southwest corner of the OMEC plant boundary, and to a point 1,800 feet to the south along the previously approved Route 2C;

  2. Use trenching over the entire length of the pipeline route, instead of boring/horizontal drilling in three sections (2,000 feet total) as previously proposed, to avoid the potential for impacts to sensitive Otay tarplant habitat due to the escape of drilling fluids ("frac-out");

  3. Narrow the construction right-of-way width from 75 feet to 60 feet in the three pipeline sections noted under item 2 above, in order to minimize construction impacts to sensitive habitat;

  4. Eliminate three temporary work areas and one temporary pullback area associated with the previously proposed boring/horizontal drilling operations; and,

  5. Increase a portion of the proposed pipeline's diameter from 20 to 24 inches from the plant site to the OMEC metering station to accommodate the project's gas supply needs.


Pursuant to section 1769(a)(2), Title 20, California Code of Regulations, Energy Commission approval of project modifications is not required if Energy Commission staff determine that:

  • There is no possibility that the modifications may have a significant effect on the environment, and

  • The modifications will not result in a change or deletion of a condition of certification, or make changes that would cause the project not to comply with applicable laws, ordinances, regulations, or standards.

Energy Commission staff has determined that the proposed modifications meet these criteria because:

  • The modification will not have any significant effect on the environment, because the proposed reroute will not create any significant adverse impacts;

  • Existing conditions of certification are sufficient to cover the proposed modification without changes to or deletion of any conditions of certification; and

  • The project as modified will maintain full compliance with applicable laws, ordinances, regulations or standards.

Any person may file a written objection to staff's determination within 14 days of service of this notice on the grounds that the project modification does not meet the criteria set forth in Section 1769(a)(2). All objections must be in writing and must be sent either by U.S. mail, e-mail, or other document delivery service to Marc Pryor, Compliance Project Manager, at the address shown below:

California Energy Commission
1516 9th Street, MS 2000
Sacramento, CA 95814

Comments may be submitted by fax to (916) 654-3882, or by e-mail at mpryor@energy.state.ca.us. If no substantive objection is received in writing by 5:00 p.m. on August 4, 2005 the requested project modifications will be deemed approved, and a description of the change will be placed in the project file.

If you have questions about this notice, please contact Marc Pryor at (916) 653-0159, or by fax or e-mail using the above information.

Date: June 21, 2005

Siting and Compliance Office
Systems Assessment & Facilities Siting Division


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