SAN JOSE, Calif., March 22, 2001 Calpine Corporation announced plans to build, own, and operate a 600-megawatt electric generating facility to be located near the town of Hudson in Weld County, Colorado.
The proposed Rocky Mountain Energy Center will supply Xcel Energy, formerly Public Service Co. of Colorado, with up to 600 megawatts of electricity for a period of ten years. Construction of the $360 million facility is scheduled to begin in 2002 with commercial operation targeted for May 2004.
The facility will use two advanced technology Siemens Westinghouse combustion turbines in combined-cycle with a single steam turbine and be fueled by natural gas. With its advanced emissions control system and configuration, the Rocky Mountain Energy Center will be 90% cleaner and 40% more efficient than the typical natural gas-fired power plant operating today, making it the cleanest, most efficient comparable power facility ever built on Colorado's Front Range.
"The Rocky Mountain Energy Center represents a cost-effective, near-term means for Xcel Energy to continue meeting the power needs of its customers," said Todd Anderson, community service manager for Xcel Energy.
"The facility's location and design support our electrical system's reliability and efforts to provide affordably priced electricity."
Calpine will manage all aspects of project development for the Rocky Mountain Energy Center, including engineering and design, construction, and operations. The project will interconnect to the local power grid via transmission lines already serving Xcel Energy.
The Rocky Mountain Energy Center is Calpine's second power project in Colorado. The previously announced 336-megawatt Colorado Energy Center, to be located in Aurora, is proceeding through the development process and expected to commence operation in 2003.
"We are extremely pleased to be able to move forward on this project," said Calpine's Vice President of Business Development, John King. "To date, Calpine has committed almost a half billion dollars to the Colorado energy market. With that, we believe Calpine has taken a significant step towards helping meet Colorado's energy needs in an environmentally and economically sustainable fashion."
Construction of the Rocky Mountain Energy Center is projected to begin by the summer of 2002 and peak construction activities will require as many as 300 workers. The facility will enter commercial operation in 2004 and employ 20-25 skilled power professionals with a combined annual payroll in excess of $1 million. The facility also will emerge as one of the leading sources of tax revenue for Weld County.
The tolling agreement with Xcel Energy is for a term of ten years. Under the contract, Xcel Energy will have dispatch rights for all of the capacity and energy produced by the facility and also will manage the purchase and delivery of fuel used at the facility.
Based in San Jose, Calif., Calpine Corporation is dedicated to providing customers with reliable and competitively priced electricity. Calpine is focused on clean, efficient, natural gas-fired generation and is the world's largest producer of renewable geothermal energy. Calpine has launched the largest power development program in North America. To date, the company has approximately 30,300 megawatts of base load capacity and 6,400 megawatts of peaking capacity in operation, under construction and in announced development in 28 states and Canada. The company was founded in 1984 and is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol CPN. For more information about Calpine, visit its Website at www.calpine.com.