Project Status: Licensed; In Compliance Phase.
Operational: July 2, 2001

The California Energy Commission approved this project's Application For Certification on April 14, 1999. The Commission monitors the power plant's construction, operation and eventual decommissioning through a compliance proceeding.

Key Dates

General Description of Project

On April 14, 1999, the California Energy Commission (Energy Commission) issued a license to Calpine Construction Finance Company, LP (Calpine) to construct the Sutter Power Project. Subsequently the facility name changed to Sutter Energy Center (SEC). The combined cycle, natural gas- fired 578-megawatt (MW) facility began commercial operation on July 2, 2001.

SEC is located approximately 7 miles southwest of Yuba City, Sutter County, along South Township Road in a rural area that is surrounded by orchards to the east and rice fields to the west. The facility consists of two combustion turbine generators, two heat recovery steam generators with duct burners, and a steam turbine generator.

SEC is inter-connected with the Western Area Power Administration’s 230-kilovolt (kV) transmission system at the O’Banion Substation, which is located approximately 2.3 miles southwest of the SEC site via an aboveground, 3.9-mile-long, 230 kV generator tie-line. SEC occupies approximately 16 acres of a 38.02-acre parcel owned by Calpine.

Adjacent and to the east of SEC is a 49.5 MW cogeneration facility called Greenleaf Unit 1 (owned by Starwood Energy Group) that is permitted by Sutter County and operated separately from SEC. Greenleaf Unit 1 occupies a separate, 39.5-acre parcel. SEC occupies approximately 16 acres of its 38.02-acre portion of the total 77-acre parcel shared with Greenleaf Unit 1.

On December 14, 2011, the Energy Commission approved two petitions to amend the project: 1) a petition to transfer ownership of the Sutter Energy Center Project pipeline from Calpine Construction Finance Company, LP to CPN Pipeline Company; and 2) a petition to add a 2.8-mile, 6-inch natural gas pipeline referred to as the Grimes Pipeline to service the power plant with natural gas from the Grimes natural gas field in the Sacramento Basin north, west of the project site.

On August 27, 2013 the Energy Commission approved a petition to transfer ownership of the Sutter Energy Center from Calpine Construction Finance Company, LP to CCFC Sutter Energy, LLC.

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.

For Questions about this Certification Proceeding Contact:

John Heiser
Project Manager
Siting, Transmission and Environmental Protection (STEP) Division
California Energy Commission
1516 Ninth Street, MS-15
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-628-5566

For Questions About Public Participation In Certification Proceedings Contact:

Public Advisor
California Energy Commission
1516 Ninth Street, MS-12 Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-654-4489
Toll-Free in California: 1-800-822-6228

News Media Please Contact:

Media & Public Communications Office
Phone: 916-654-4989

Original Proceeding

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