High Desert Power Project

Docket Number:

97-AFC-01 (Application For Certification)
97-AFC-01C (Compliance Proceeding)

Project Status: Licensed; In Compliance Phase. ; Petition to Amend in Review
Operational: April 22, 2003

The California Energy Commission approved this project's Application For Certification on May 3, 2000. The Commission monitors the power plant's construction, operation and eventual decommissioning through a compliance proceeding.

Committee Overseeing Amendment Proceeding:

Karen Douglas, Commissioner, Presiding Member

Janea Scott, Commissioner, Associate Member

Hearing Officer: Susan Cochran

Key Dates

  • Original Proceeding
    • 6/30/1997 - Application for Certification (AFC) filed
    • 12/3/1997 - Commission accepts AFC as "data adequate."
    • 5/15/1998 - Staff file draft Preliminary Staff Assessment.
    • 6/20/1998 - Mojave Desert AQMD filed Preliminary Determination of Compliance.
    • 7/8/1998 - Applicant notified Energy Commission that it would no longer pursue simple cycle project configuration.
    • 5/15/1998 - Commission staff releases Preliminary Staff Assessment.
    • 10/1/1998 - Mojave Desert AQMD will file Revised Preliminary Determination of Compliance.
    • 1/21/1999 - Commission staff releases Final Staff Assessment.
    • 12/15/1999 - Committee releases Presiding Member's Proposed Decision.
    • 5/3/2000 - Commission approves Application for Certification.
    • 4/22/2003 - Power plant on line and producing power.
  • Amendment Proceeding


The High Desert Power Project is a 830-megawatt, combined-cycle power plant that was certified by the Energy Commission on May 3, 2000, and began commercial operations in April 2003. The facility is located in the city of Victorville, in San Bernardino County. There are three combustion turbines (160 MW each) and three steam turbines (86.5 MW each).

Since April 2003, the project’s primary water supply has been State Water Project (SWP) surface water purchased from the City through a contract with the Mojave Water Agency) MWA). On average, the project uses 2,700 acre-feet per year of project related water. The bulk of its industrial water is used in evaporative wet cooling towers. The project includes a zero liquid discharge system to treat and recover water from waste disposal streams.

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 Certification Proceeding Contact:

Joe Douglas
Compliance Project Manager
Siting, Transmission and Environmental Protection (STEP) Division
California Energy Commission
1516 Ninth Street, MS-2000
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-653-4677
E-mail: Joe.Douglas@energy.ca.gov

For Questions About Public Participation In Certification Proceedings Contact:

Public Advisor
California Energy Commission
1516 Ninth Street, MS-12 Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-654-4489
Toll-Free in California: 1-800-822-6228
E-mail: PublicAdvisor@energy.ca.gov

News Media Please Contact:

Media & Public Communications Office
Phone: 916-654-4989
E-mail: mediaoffice@energy.ca.gov

Compliance Proceeding

2015 Amendment Proceeding

Original Proceeding



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