presiding member's proposed decision (pmpd)

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    Application For Certification (01-AFC-6)Los Angeles County

    City of Burbank



    JANUARY 2003P800-03-002

    Gray Davis, Governor

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    Application For Certification (01-AFC-6)Los Angeles County

    City of Burbank



    FEBRUARY 2003P800-03-002

    Gray Davis, Governor


    1516 9th StreetSacramento, CA altamont

    JOHN L . GE E SMA N Commissioner and Presiding Member

    A R T HUR H. R OSE NFE L DCommissioner and Associate Member

    SUSA N GE FT E RHearing Officer

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    This Decision contains our rationale for determining that the Magnolia Power

    Project complies with all applicable laws, ordinances, regulations, and standards,

    and may therefore be licensed. It is based exclusively upon the record

    established during this certification proceeding and summarized in this

    document. We have independently evaluated the evidence, provided references

    to the record1 supporting our findings and conclusions, and specified the

    measures required to ensure that the Magnolia Power Project is designed,

    constructed, and operated in the manner necessary to protect public health and

    safety, promote the general welfare, and preserve environmental quality.

    The Southern California Public Power Authority (Applicant or SCPPA) filed an

    application for the Magnolia Power Project (MPP or project), a nominally rated

    250-megawatt (MW) natural gas-fired power plant with a peaking capacity of 328

    MW. The project will be located at 164 West Magnolia Boulevard in the City of

    Burbank (COB) at the existing site of the Magnolia Power Station, which is

    owned and operated by the Burbank Water and Power Department. The 23-acre

    site is bound by Magnolia Boulevard on the north, Lake Avenue on the west,

    Olive Avenue on the south, and the Western Burbank Flood Control Channel,

    railway switching yards, and Interstate Highway 5 to the east. The MPP will

    occupy four acres made available by demolition of the existing Magnolia Units 1

    and 2.

    The MPP includes a Model 7FA General Electric combustion turbine generator, a

    heat recovery steam generator with a 150-foot exhaust stack, a steam turbine

    1 All references to the Reporters Transcript appear as RT, page. The Reporters Transcriptrefers to the Evidentiary Hearing conducted by the Committee on November 18, 2002. Exhibits

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    generator, switchyard upgrades, two underground 69 kV transmission circuits, a

    cooling tower, storage tanks, natural gas compressors, makeup water

    demineralizers, a zero liquid discharge wastewater treatment system, and other

    ancillary facilities. The combustion turbine will burn only natural gas; no other

    fuel will be used. The MPP will use reclaimed water from the Burbank Water

    Reclamation Plant (BWRP) for cooling tower makeup.

    The power plant will interconnect onsite to the Olive Substation via the two new

    underground transmission lines within the existing power station. (RT, p. 9; Ex.

    45, p. 3-1.) No new offsite transmission lines, natural gas, water supply, or

    wastewater pipelines are required. The Olive Substation connects to the COBs

    transmission and distribution system.

    Applicant will begin project construction in the second quarter of 2003 and

    commence commercial operation by the second quarter of 2005. During the 24-

    month construction period, the project will provide a maximum of 320

    construction jobs. During operation, the project will employ approximately 30

    permanent staff, who will be employees of the COB. The facility has a planned

    life of 25 years. Applicant estimates the capital costs associated with the project

    will be approximately $225 million.

    SCPPA, the project owner, is a consortium of municipalities and an irrigation

    district established by a Joint Powers Agreement to develop, construct, and

    operate electric generation projects. The participating member cities in this

    project (Anaheim, Burbank, Cerritos, Colton, Glendale, and Pasadena) are

    developing the project to meet new demand in their respective service territories.

    The COB is the Project Manager and Operator. SCPPA will lease the site from

    the COB and in turn, the COB will provide utility services related to construction,

    operation, and maintenance of the project.

    included in the evidentiary record are cited as Ex. Number. A list of all exhibits is contained inAppendix C of this Decision.

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    Several local, state, and federal agencies cooperated with the Energy

    Commission in completing this review process. The Applicant and Commission

    staff worked with the City of Burbank, the South Coast Air Quality Management

    District (SCAQMD), the California Air Resources Board (CARB), the U.S.

    Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), the California Department of Health

    Services, the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board, the California

    Department of Transportation (Caltrans), Southern California Edison, the Los

    Angeles Department of Water and Power, and the California Independent

    System Operator (Cal-ISO). California Unions for Reliable Energy (CURE), the

    only formal intervenor in this case, did not participate in the process.

    SCAQMD was responsible for coordinating input from the USEPA and CARB, in

    consultation with Commission staff, in drafting its Final Determination of

    Compliance (FDOC) on the projects conformity with state and federal air quality

    standards. However, the MPPs offset package was not finalized at the

    conclusion of evidentiary hearings. Section 25523(d)(2) of the Public Resources

    Code requires a complete offset package prior to certification. The Committee

    has therefore scheduled a hearing to reopen the record and receive evidence on

    the final offset package submitted to SCAQMD. The project will use the best

    available control technology (BACT), as required by SCAQMD, to reduce

    emissions to levels of insignificance. The limitations on project emissions and

    the conditions imposed by SCAQMD as well as the mitigation measures

    recommended by Staff are incorporated into this Decision.

    The COB provided a Will Serve letter to the Applicant agreeing to meet all of

    the MPPs water demand. The primary source will be reclaimed water via an

    existing pipeline from the BWRP. Use of reclaimed water for power plant cooling

    is a beneficial use consistent with state policy.

    The Applicants initial project design was based on recycling wastewater from

    cooling tower blowdown to the BWRP for discharge into the Burbank Western

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    Wash, which required a revised National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

    (NPDES) permit from the LARWQCB. Delays in obtaining a revised NPDES

    permit caused delays in the certification review process. Consequently, the

    Applicant modified the project proposal to include a zero liquid discharge (ZLD)

    water treatment system that does not result in any wastewater discharge.

    Instead, the ZLD treatment recycles cooling tower blowdown by removing

    dissolved and suspended solids that eventually form a solid waste material (salt

    cake) that can be deposited at an appropriate landfill.

    To ensure that the BWRP will supply sufficient amounts of properly treated

    reclaimed water, Staff proposed Condition of Certification SOIL and WATER-7,which requires the MPP to operate as if the BWRP has completed modifications

    to its plant that would remove certain impurities from reclaimed water delivered to

    the MPP. The language of this proposed Condition is confusing and

    unenforceable. We direct the parties to rewrite the Condition to express the

    specific requirements intended.

    Staffs testimony was inconsistent on the amount of salt cake from the ZLD

    process that would be deposited at the landfills. Evidence in the Waste

    Management testimony states that operation of the ZLD system will generate 22

    tons of salt cake per year. The Soil and Water testimony asserts that it will be 9

    tons per day. We direct the parties to provide the accurate daily and yearly

    amounts of ZLD solid waste to be deposited at local landfills.

    Staff also proposed Conditions SOIL and WATER-1 through 4 that would requirethe project owner to implement mitigation measures contained in the Final Staff

    Assessment related to the Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plans and the

    Erosion and Sedimentation Control Plans. However, the draft Conditions do not

    identify the referenced measures. We direct the parties to rewrite these

    Conditions to express the specific mitigation measures intended.

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    In the Environmental Justice (EJ) analysis contained in the Socioeconomics

    discussion, the parties relied on the 2000 Census to identify minority populations

    in the project area but used 1990 Census data to identify low-income



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