Energy Commission Outlines Reliability Plan

By Published On: September 5, 2013

The California Energy Commission released a plan for maintaining power system reliability, particularly in San Diego, after the permanent retirement of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station earlier this summer. According to the commission, the state would maintain its “Flex Alert” program and the California Public Utilities Commission would step up utility energy efficiency, demand-response, distributed generation, combined heat and power, and energy storage resources. California Public Utilities Commission president Mike Peevey said that the CPUC would join with the Energy Commission to discuss the plan next week. In addition the plan envisions: * Synchronous condensers would be installed at the Talega substation for voltage support. Another voltage support installation would be for the San Onofre Mesa substation. San Diego Gas & Electric is expected to file an application for approval next year and have the devices online by summer of 2016. * A new 230 kV transmission line would be built from the Sycamore Canyon to Penasquitos substations to improve power flows from east to west by 2017. * Regulators and the utilities would consider converting one of San Onofre’s generators into a synchronous condenser by summer of 2015. * SDG&E would delay retirement of the 188 MW Cabrillo II peaking generation from the end of this year until 2015. * The CPUC would approve SDG&E’s proposed power purchase agreement with the 305 MW Pio Pico project, which would be online by 2015. In addition, the 558 MW Carlsbad Energy Center would be completed by 2017. Looking longer term, the plan calls for more gas pipeline capacity into San Diego to supply fuel to natural gas power plants that will be running more often. The paper also contemplates delaying the closure of the once-through cooled Encina units 4 and 5 until after 2017, the current date for closure under the state’s policy to end once-through cooling of power plants with ocean water. A number of other long-term projects out outlined.

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