CPV Towantic says its gas-fired project fits in Connecticut’s resource planning

The gas-fired CPV Towantic LLC power project fits within a draft integrated resource plan issued late last year by Connecticut regulators, said CPV Towantic in a March 3 filing with the Connecticut Siting Council.

The council for the past few months has been conducting contentious hearings on an expanded version of this project. CPV Towantic wants to modify a 1999 Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need based on changed conditions for the construction, maintenance and operation of a 785-MW dual-fuel combined cycle facility located north of the Prokop Road and Towantic Hill Road intersection in the Town of Oxford, Connecticut. The 1999 approval covered a 512-MW combined cycle plant.

“The January 29, 2015 hearing included considerable discussion of the consistency of CPV Towantic’s (‘CPV’) proposed Facility with the draft Integrated Resource Plan for Connecticut (‘Draft IRP’) issued by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (‘DEP’ or the ‘Department’) on December 11, 2014,” the company wrote. “In this document, CPV highlights statements in the draft IRP demonstrating that CPV Towantic Energy Center is consistent with and furthers the goals and policies of the draft IRP and, thereby, provides substantial public benefits to Connecticut and its residents.

“CPV adds that Connecticut ratepayers will be shouldering a portion of the region’s capacity costs due to the shortage of resources realized in ISO-NE’s eighth Forward Capacity Auction (FCA8), that took place in February 2014, for the period June 1, 2017 thru May 31, 2018. The cost of capacity tripled for FCA8. Notably, ISO-NE’s ninth Forward Capacity Auction (FCA9) that took place February 2015 procured greater than 1,400 MW of new resources, including the CPV Towantic Energy Center which will now be relied on by Connecticut and the entire New England region to maintain reliability and stabilize capacity costs.”

In bolstering its position, CPV Towantic quoted various passages from the draft IRP, including:

  • “Several projects are already in development including the 560 MW CPV Towantic project in Connecticut…. Other potential projects not yet permitted could take longer to develop.”
  • “New England’s natural gas electric generation fleet faces a high probability of experiencing critical shortages on 24 to 34 days every winter by 2020.”
  • “Natural gas generators have lower emissions and are also very flexible, allowing them to ramp up quickly in response to changes in load.”
  • “Solution to the region’s winter peak reliability problem includes ‘dual-fired generation capability’ among other options.”

The March 3 update filing also included a look at getting Federal Aviation Administration clearance for the project (it will be located near the Waterbury-Oxford Airport) and also an update on efforts to get a gas pipeline interconnect for the project with Spectra Energy.

On the pipeline situation, the company said: “CPV Towantic initially engaged Spectra in a dialogue regarding interconnection to Spectra’s Algonquin pipeline system. Discussion with Spectra’s team at that point in time indicated pipeline pressures would be sufficient to support operation at the CPV Towantic Energy Center. As talks advanced, Spectra continued to provide additional information. CPV Towantic’s analysis of this most recent data, provided by Spectra on February 26, 2015, indicates that on-site gas compression may be required. The inclusion of gas compression, should it be necessary, will not require extensive site plan modification or materially affect the proposed Project’s impacts with respect to air emissions, noise, visual profile, thermal efficiency or safety.”

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.