PSE acquires 310MW natural gas-fired power plant in Washington
Puget Sound Energy (PSE) has signed an agreement to buy the 11-month old power-generating facility from Minnesota-based Wayzata Opportunities Fund. An approval of the transaction by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission cleared the way for PSE to complete the purchase on December 5, 2008, using previously secured bank financing. The Longview facility employs combined-cycle technology that allows it to generate electricity using both a natural gas cycle and, from the power-generating turbine's exhaust heat, a steam cycle. The process reportedly boosts operating efficiency, lowers fuel costs, and cuts air emissions. PSE intends to retain appropriate staff currently operating the Mint Farm power plant. Kimberly Harris, executive vice president and chief resource officer for PSE, said: "Our long-term strategy for procuring the new resources our customers require focuses first on boosting energy efficiency and then on adding more renewable power supplies. The third leg of the stool rests largely on clean-burning, readily dispatchable natural gas-fired power generation that facilities like Mint Farm can provide."