For Immediate Release, February 20, 2020


Jane Williams, California Communities Against Toxics, (661) 256-2101,
Lisa Belenky, Center for Biological Diversity, (415) 385-5694,

California Terminates Plan for Southern California Gas-fired Power Plant

Project’s Downfall Spotlights Shift Toward Renewable Energy

SACRAMENTO, Calif.— The California Energy Commission terminated the license today for the Palmdale Energy Project, a proposed fracked-gas-fired power plant in the Southern California city of Palmdale.

The termination came at the request of the plant’s developer, who cited a lack of interest in new fossil fuel power generation.

“It’s extremely gratifying to see the death of this project, which would have locked in decades of additional fossil fuel pollution,” said Lisa Belenky, an attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. “The demise of this power plant is a vivid demonstration that both consumers and California energy markets are ready to shift to clean renewable energy sources.”

The Center and Desert Citizens Against Pollution began their fight against the Palmdale Energy Project in 2010 when they intervened in the licensing process.

Last year the two groups were joined by California Communities Against Toxics and Sierra Club in challenging the EPA’s decision to issue an air-pollution permit to the plant. That lawsuit, which challenges the EPA’s reliance on antiquated energy technology, is currently pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit.

The Antelope Valley, where the power plant was to be built, already has a severe smog problem. The plant could have added more than a quarter of a million additional pounds of smog-forming pollution per year and more than 4 billion pounds of climate-disrupting carbon pollution.

“Local residents have opposed the building of this power plant because it would add huge amounts of air pollution in our valley that already experiences unhealthy levels of air pollution.” said Jane Williams of California Communities Against Toxics. “It’s time we put the health of our children above the profits of polluters and embrace a clean energy future!”

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 1.7 million members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

California Communities Against Toxics was founded in 1989 and is a coalition of over 30 groups in California advocating for Environmental Justice, Pollution Prevention, and World Peace.