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EL CAJON, CA-The planning commission here has approved construction of the city’s first power plant. CalPeak Power plans to build the 49-megawatt power plant at the northwest corner of Johnson Avenue and West Main Street.

City officials say it could be online by September and generate electricity for 49,000 homes. The city could sell half that power to stave off rolling blackouts and reduce wholesale prices, according to San Diego-based CalPeak Power officials.

CalPeak has proposed four peak use plants in the county, including the natural gas-fired combustion turbine generator in this East County city. Others are slated for Otay Mesa, Mission Valley and Escondido.

Peak-use power plants generate electricity at times of high demand. During the current energy shortage, peak-use plants would run continuously, however.

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