GE Pulling the Plug on 750MW Gas-Fired CA Plant

The Inland Empire Energy Center entered into an agreement to sell the project site and certain assets to a third party that intends to develop a battery energy storage system.
GE Turbine. Image courtesy of General Electric

General Electric Co. will demolish a 750-megawatt gas-fired power plant in California this year. The reason behind the decision is purely economic, as the facility is now too expensive to operate and maintain in a state where wind and solar supply an increasing share of much more affordable electricity.

The Inland Empire Energy Center spreads across 46 acres in Riverside County and was licensed by the California Energy Commission in December 2003. The project consists of two GE S107H systems, each of which includes a combustion turbine generator, a heat recovery steam generator, and a condensing steam turbine and a generator. Both systems have each a single 195-foot exhaust stack. Additional project equipment includes a de-aerating surface condenser, 16-cell mechanical draft cooling tower, nominal 100,000 pounds per hour auxiliary boiler, two diesel-fired emergency generators and a 370-horsepower diesel fire pump.

The electricity it generates is supplied to the California Independent System Operator and has Local and System Resource Adequacy commitments through the end of 2019. One of the two turbines has been mothballed since March 2017 based on economic considerations and IEEC will cease operation of the entire project in December 2019.

The Inland Empire Energy Center entered into an agreement to sell the project site and certain assets to a third party that intends to develop a battery energy storage system. IEEC has set the goal of transferring the project site to the battery energy storage system developer is January 2021.