Huntington Beach Modernization

Docket Number:

00-AFC-13 (Application For Certification)
00-AFC-13C (Compliance Proceeding)

Project Status: Licensed; In Compliance Phase.
Operational: Unit 3 - July 31, 2002
Operational: Unit 4 - August 7, 2003

The California Energy Commission approved this project's Application For Certification on May 10, 2001. The Commission monitors the power plant's construction, operation and eventual decommissioning through a compliance proceeding.

Key Dates

  • 12/1/2000 - Application for Certification (AFC) filed
  • 2/7/2001 - Commission accepts AFC as "data adequate."
  • 5/10/2001 - Commission approves Application for Certification.
  • 7/31/2002 - Unit 3 on line and producing power.
  • 8/7/2003 - Unit 4 on line and producing power.


The AES Huntington Beach Generating Station Retool Project will be a nominal 450 megawatt (MW), natural gas-fired boiler retooling at the existing Huntington Beach Generating Station (HBGS) located in the City of Huntington Beach, in Orange County. The 12-acre site is located at 21730 Newland Street, southeast of the intersection of Newland Street and the Pacific Coast Highway, and about 600 feet east of the Pacific Ocean.

AES is proposing to retool and operate Units 3 and 4, which currently exist, but are out of service at the HBGS. The steam turbine generators will be rebuilt with new natural gas burners, a burner management system, and new draft fans. Southern California Edison (SCE) took these units out of service in 1995 when it owned the HBGS. At that time SCE surrendered its operating permits to the South Coast Air Quality Management District. The Retool Project would restore these units to service. In addition to the boiler retooling, AES will be adding Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) equipment for emissions control.

The proposed Retool Project will be built entirely within the boundaries of the existing HBGS. No additional transmission lines or related transmission facilities will be required. It will use an existing 230 kilovolt (kV) switchyard owned by SCE. The proposed project will use natural gas supplied by the Southern California Gas Company via an existing 30-inch diameter pipeline. No changes to the pipeline or onsite connection to the pipeline will be required.

The project will use once through circulating water from the Pacific Ocean for cooling, while process water for steam generation and potable water for domestic needs will be supplied by the City of Huntington Beach via existng city water mains. Circulating cooling water, plant low volume waste streams such as water softener regeneration brines, and stormwater are currently discharged from the plant to the Pacific Ocean under the provisions of a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit. The retooled Units 3 and 4 would discharge to the same existing system.

During construction, a peak workforce of 530 people would be employed. During operation, the HBGS, with the addition of the retooled Units 3 and 4, would employ approximately 43 full-time staff.

Energy Commission Facility Certification Process

The California Energy Commission is the lead agency (for licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts and larger) under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and has a certified regulatory program under CEQA. Under its certified program, the Energy Commission is exempt from having to prepare an environmental impact report. Its certified program, however, does require environmental analysis of the project, including an analysis of alternatives and mitigation measures to minimize any significant adverse effect the project may have on the environment.

For Questions About This Siting Case Contact:

Eric Veerkamp
Compliance Project Manager
Siting, Transmission and Environmental Protection (STEP) Division
California Energy Commission
1516 Ninth Street, MS-2000
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-654-4295

For Questions About Participation In Siting Cases Contact:

Public Adviser
California Energy Commission
1516 Ninth Street, MS-12 Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-654-4489
Toll-Free in California: 1-800-822-6228

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