FERC okays sale of 121-MW California peaker to Carlyle Group

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on March 19 approved the sale of a gas-fired peaking plant in California to an affiliate of equity investor The Carlyle Group.

On Jan. 21, Malaga Power LLC sought authorization for the acquisition of jurisdictional facilities resulting from a proposed transaction in which it will purchase the Malaga Peaking Plant and associated interconnection facilities from the Kings River Conservation District. Kings River is a resource management agency for the Kings River region of the San Joaquin Valley.

Kings River owns 100% of this 121-MW natural gas-fired facility located in Fresno County, California. The facility is interconnected to the transmission system owned by Pacific Gas and Electric and operated by the California Independent System Operator.

Malaga Power intends to operate as an exempt wholesale generator (EWG) under the Public Utility Holding Company Act of 2005 (PUHCA). It has filed a petition for market-based rate authorization at the commission. It will sell all of the output from the facility at wholesale pursuant to its market-based rate authorization.

Malaga Power is a direct wholly-owned subsidiary of Malaga Power Holdings LLC, which in turn is a direct wholly-owned subsidiary of Cogentrix Malaga Power Holdings LLC. The sole member of Cogentrix Malaga is Carlyle Power Malaga Peaker LLC. As of the closing of this transaction: Carlyle Malaga will be controlled by Carlyle Power Opportunities Capital AIV LP as its managing member; and Carlyle Power Opportunities Malaga Peaker Coinvest AIV LP will hold non-managing membership interests in Carlyle Malaga. Carlyle Capital and Carlyle Malaga Coinvest are investment fund vehicles sponsored and managed by The Carlyle Group or its affiliates. The Carlyle Group is a global alternative investment management firm that is a publicly traded entity.

In a separate March 19 order, FERC approved Malaga Power’s market-based rate authority.

Through The Carlyle Group, Malaga Power is affiliated with the following entities that collectively own or control 437 MW of electric generation capacity in the relevant market for this facility – CAISO:

  • CalPeak Power-Border LLC, CalPeak Power–Enterprise LLC, CalPeak Power–Panoche LLC and CalPeak Power–Vaca Dixon LLC, each of which is an EWG that owns and operates a 49.5-MW facility;
  • Midway Peaking LLC, an EWG that owns a 139.8-MW facility;
  • Sunray Energy LLC, the owner of a 13.8-MW solar qualifying facility (QF) and a 30-MW solar QF; and
  • Bottle Rock Power LLC, the owner of a 55-MW geothermal QF.
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.