The fate of a controversial power plant proposed for the South Coast apparently could remain up in the air until well into 2018.
With some older power plants set to close in the next few years in Oxnard, NRG Energy has been seeking a California Energy Commission permit to build a new facility, the Puente Power Project, at the oceanfront site. A coalition of groups opposes the plans because of environmental and social justice concerns.
An Energy Commission committee made the unusual move last month of announcing it would oppose the project when it comes up for a full commission vote.
That announcement prompted NRG to ask the Commission to suspend work on its application, so it could have time to decide whether it will pursue, or drop it. Opponents pushed the committee to deny the delay, believing if a vote happened now the project would be rejected.
On Friday, the committee granted NRG’s request for a delay, rejecting the arguments of opponents. The motion means the proceedings are suspended until May 1st, 2018. But, it’s still possible that between now and then NRG could announce plans to drop the project.