US Borax readies for open-market power sales from California cogen

Due to the imminent expiration of a power sales contract, US Borax Inc. applied May 1 with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for acceptance fof a market-based rate tariff effective June 30, 2015, waiver of certain commission regulations under the Federal Power Act (FPA) and certain blanket approvals.

US Borax owns and operates a 48.2 MW (nameplate) cogeneration facility located in Kern County, California, that is a qualifying facility (QF) under the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978, as amended (PURPA). US Borax is currently exempt from rate regulation under FPA section 205 because all of its wholesale power sales are made under a power purchase agreement (PPA) made pursuant to the California Public Utility Commission’s (CPUC’s) implementation of section 210 of PURPA. However, the PPA, which is with Southern California Edison, will expire on July 1, 2015, at which point the plant’s wholesale power sales will be subject to rate regulation under FPA section 205.

This facility is interconnected to the transmission system owned by Southern California Edison and operated by the California Independent System Operator. US Borax is a wholly-owned indirect subsidiary of Rio Tinto Plc, which is a London-based global company with primary interests in mining and metal processing.

A company contact is: Mike Bonomo,  Energy Manager,  Rio Tinto Minerals, Boron Operations, 14486 Borax Rd., Boron CA 93516, Tel: (760) 762-7331, Mike.Bonomo@riotinto.com.

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.