The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission at its June 2 meeting will be looking at whether to sign off on an Environmental Assessment and a site permit for the proposed, 345-MW expansion of Calpine‘s (NYSE: CPN) gas-fired Mankato Energy Center.
Calpine subsidiary Mankato Energy Center II LLC has proposed to expand the existing Mankato Energy Center (MEC) by adding a combustion turbine generator (CTG), a heat recovery steam generator (HRSG) and associated equipment. The initial phase of the MEC facility was constructed in 2006 to accommodate an expansion at a later time.
The existing MEC facility has one CTG, one HSRG, and a steam turbine. Existing infrastructure installed for the MEC (electrical transmission, gas pipeline, and water service) will be used for the expansion project, noted a briefing memo on the project issued May 26 by PUC staff. After the expansion the facility would have two CTGs and two HSRGs. The two HSRGs will drive the existing and sole steam turbine. The project will use natural gas as a fuel source.
The expansion of the MEC would allow for the production of an additional 345 MW – adding 290 MW of baseload capacity and 55 MW of peaking capacity. The project is anticipated to be operational by June 1, 2019, and is estimated to cost between $220 million and $300 million.
PUC staff recommends approval of the Environmental Assessment and proposed findings of fact that would grant the site permit under certain basic conditions.