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CALIFORNIA WIND ENERGY PROJECTS TO DOUBLE KENETECH WINDPOWER'S BACKLOG

 SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- KENETECH Corp. (NASDAQ: KWND) today announced that its Windpower subsidiary won preliminary approval to develop approximately 450 megawatts (MW) of wind energy projects in California under rankings of projects submitted in the state's Biannual Resource Plan Update (BRPU).
 The California Public Utilities Commission established the BRPU process to set the procedures by which the state's three largest utilities would solicit and select proposals to build new electric power plants. Thirty percent of the bids were set aside for renewable energy technologies such as wind, geothermal and solar. In essence, this process, for the first time, established a large-scale market test of the economics of various renewable energy resources.
 KENETECH President Gerald Alderson said: "We are delighted with our ranking. This decision clearly underscores Windpower's ability to compete as the least-cost renewable resource for utilities." It further demonstrates, Alderson added, "the growing competitiveness of wind with traditional fossil fuel generation."
 Project bids were submitted by KENETECH to San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E), Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) and Southern California Edison (SCE). The first two utilities have issued preliminary rankings of project bid submittals. SDG&E gave preliminary approval to six of KENETECH's bids -- roughly 87 percent of the bids submitted by the company. PG&E included 100MW of KENETECH's Windplants in its project rankings, representing approximately 70 percent of its total bids. The utilities are expected to issue final awards for the projects in May.
 The SDG&E rankings include 350MW of the KENETECH Windplants. The rankings also include 94MW of geothermal projects and 85MW of other wind projects. KENETECH projects represent 67 percent of total available renewable megawatts in the PG&E solicitation.
 Alderson added, "The planned projects will utilize approximately 1,200 of KENETECH's Model 33M-VS variable speed wind turbines. This would more than double KENETECH's backlog for our 33M-VS turbine."
 All of the bids were ranked on a scoring system. The preliminary rankings, and the contracts that are eventually awarded, are based on a "second-price auction." Under this system projects are selected based upon the costs of the lowest-priced losing bid.
 SCE elected Thursday to suspend its bidding process and did not release preliminary project rankings. KENETECH's bids reflected market values and were not a factor in SCE's decision.
 The proposed Windplants will be developed in several phases at various sites and are expected to be operational in 1997-99. CNF Constructors Inc., a subsidiary of KENETECH Corp., will serve as the prime contractor and will engineer the project.
 KENETECH Corp. is a leading provider of products and services to the electric power industry. Through its subsidiaries, the company designs, builds, finances and maintains power plants that utilize environmentally preferred technologies -- principally wind, biomass and natural gas. The company also provides energy management services to industrial, institutional and commercial customers.
 -0- 12/10/93
 /CONTACT: Clarence Grebey of KENETECH, 415-398-3825/
 (KWND)


CO: KENETECH Corp. ST: California IN: UTI OIL SU:

RB-LW -- SF007 -- 2673 12/10/93 13:31 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Dec 10, 1993
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