For the Town of Erie, Colorado (Town), members of ERG performed an independent review of Xcel Energy’s 230 kV transmission substation proposed to be constructed within the Town. Concentrated areas of study included an analysis of the justification for Xcel’s proposed project, review of Xcel’s environmental, siting and permitting studies, investigation of transmission line routing alternatives, structure placement and design alternatives, substation siting alternatives considering primary distribution interconnection issues, and visual impact issues. In conjunction with this engagement, members of ERG identified a number of mitigation measures designed to reduce project impacts, which were subsequently negotiated with Xcel. The results of ERG independent project review were presented to the Town Board for consideration. As a following activity, members of ERG negotiated certain project enhancements on behalf of the Town to alleviate local residents’ concerns.
A member of ERG was responsible for the performance of independent due diligence on behalf of the Fuji Bank concerning the Tok Junction project. The project consisted of a proposed privately owned and operated 200 MW coal-fired steam turbine generation complex with both combustion turbine and diesel based generation backup capacity. The project was proposed to be constructed under contract to the U.S. Department of Defense to provide an extreme high reliability power source for a planned U.S. Air Force Over The Horizon Backscatter radar installation (OTHBR) to be located near Tok Junction, Alaska. The project was reviewed as regarding its design basis, adequacy of proposed fuel supply arrangements and projected operating reliability factors. An independent review of project’s capital cost and planned staffing arrangements was also accomplished on behalf of Fuji Bank, the project lender, for financing purposes.
- Meetings in Japan with Hitachi Corporation and Taisei Corporation (the Project developers) to obtain detailed project data for subsequent analysis;
- Site inspection and review of a similar project utilizing Von Roll grate mass burn technology located in Mito, Japan;
- Quantification of the solid waste stream available to the project;
- Investigation of power purchase rates of the Guam Power Authority and tipping fees of the Guam Dept. of Public Works applicable to the project;
- Determination of the anticipated bypass solid waste stream;
- Review of the applicability of the proposed generating technology;
- Review of project environmental and regulatory requirements;
- Independent review of project capital cost projections;
- Independent review of proposed construction scheduling;
- Development of proforma estimates of project annual costs and expected revenues;
- Provision of expert testimony before the Guam Legislature concerning the feasibility of the project and proposed issuance of revenue bonds in support of project development;
A member of the Firm served as the primary consultant to the Electricity Trust of South Australia regarding the development of a joint venture coal fired cogeneration project with Penrice Soda Products, Ltd. The project proposed replacement of an existing conventional steam boiler utilized for industrial steam supply with a new boiler system and extraction turbine/generator rated at 90 MW for combined heat and power operation. The project was the first cogeneration project developed in South Australia. The following services were provided: review of the industrial steam load characteristics; assistance in negotiation of a joint venture development agreement; development of fuel supply, steam sale and power sale/purchase agreements; review of proposed equipment procurement and construction schedules; and Proforma projection of project operating costs.
▶ Independent Review of Siting Issues Concerning Expansion of an Existing Xcel Energy Gas Compression Station Facility
On behalf of the City of Louisville, Colorado (City), members of ERG performed an independent review of a proposal by Xcel Energy to significantly expand the size and capacity of an existing pipeline gas compression station located within the City. In this regard, members of ERG reviewed Xcel’s Application to the Boulder County Land Use Department for approval of the construction, operation and maintenance of Xcel’s proposed project. Xcel’s proposal favored significant expansion of its existing facility over development of a new facility at two alternative sites. In conjunction with this engagement, members of ERG performed an independent review of the proposed project’s technical feasibility, environmental and land use compatibility and impacts, and associated considerations. A physical review of Xcel’s three alternative project sites was also performed by ERG to determine the project’s comparative impacts in order to identify the site offering the lowest impacts relative to local resident’s concerns. Members of ERG prepared an Expert Report of the studies undertaken and conclusions for submittal to the Boulder County Commissioners (Commissioners). Two members of ERG participated in siting hearings before the Commissioners and provided oral testimony on behalf of the City. Reversing their preliminary findings which favored expansion of Xcel’s existing facility located within the City, ultimately the Commissioners approved construction of Xcel’s proposed project at the alternative site recommended by ERG.
A member of the Firm served as the primary consultant to Credit Suisse regarding the performance of an annual review of DESTEC Energy Company’s generation project located in Bakersfield, California. The project includes four General Electric LM2500 combustion turbine based combined cycle units. Credit Suisse is the primary project lender concerning the installation. The following services were provided: review of operating history including forced outages and premature equipment failures; review of operating and maintenance expenses; determination of the cost impact of excessive forced outages and premature equipment failures; review of manufacturer warranty provisions; and development of recommendations of alternative design changes and operation and maintenance activity changes to improve project performance. A Confidential report to Credit Suisse regarding the project was prepared in conjunction with the engagement.