PG&E Response to August 3 Demolition

Our thoughts and prayers are with those who were injured during the demolition of the former Kern Power Plant. Safety of the public and employees is our first priority at all times and we are deeply saddened that at least one individual suffered serious injuries.

We will work closely with all investigating agencies and the third-party contractors who managed and carried out the demolition as they work to identify the cause of this accident.

Claims/Public Assistance Process

PG&E has an established process in place for requests for assistance and encourages anyone who may be injured or experienced damage to their property to contact PG&E through this webpage or by calling (559) 263-5291.

About the Kern Power Plant

The former Kern Power Plant began operations in 1948, generating electricity for 240,000 homes in Central and Northern California. In 1985, PG&E permanently closed the plant.

In 2000, PG&E began the process of selling the property, entering into Purchase/Sell agreements with two different buyers over the last ten years. Neither of those efforts resulted in the sale of the property.

In late 2011, PG&E began efforts to dismantle the Kern Power Plant, removing several cooling towers, a large chiller and three storage buildings.
In December 2011, PG&E announced a multi-year, multi-phase plan to remove the remaining structures—a concrete power block, fuel storage tanks, small storage buildings and the concrete foundations of the buildings removed earlier—and clean up the power plant property.

The site will continue to serve as an active electric substation, providing power to tens of thousands of PG&E customers in the southern portion of Bakersfield and Kern County.

Our Commitment to Bakersfield

We are committed to continuing an open dialogue with the community throughout the process of dismantling the plant and cleaning up the property. We will seek the active participation of community groups, including the PG&E Bakersfield Community Advisory Group, as the project proceeds.

PG&E and its contractor will also be working with the City of Bakersfield, County of Kern, the Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board and other regulatory agencies throughout the project.

Protecting the health and safety of the public, workers and the environment will be our top priority during the cleanup of Kern Power Plant. As deconstruction moves forward, PG&E will work with the various regulatory agencies to ensure the project has minimal impact on the environment.

Our goal is to quickly and safely remove all power plant structures and then to clean up the site to allow for reuse of the property. It is a rare opportunity to have a change in land use at a power plant site and we look forward to working with the community to make this inactive property an asset to the community.

Multi-year, Multi-phase Timeline

Late 2011 Cleanup begins--cooling towers, storage buildings and chiller removed from the site
December 2011 PG&E announced a multi-year, multi-phase plan to remove the remaining structures and clean up the site
March 2012 PG&E selects Cleveland Wrecking as the general demolition contractor
Construction/prep work begins on site
April 2012 Asbestos removal work begins
June 2012 Demolition activities to begin on fuel storage tanks
August 2012Demolition work to begin on concrete power block
November 2012 Demolition work to begin on large steel structure (boilers)
Spring 2013Site cleared of structures
Subsurface assessment for environmental remediation begins
August 2013Remaining structures to be demolished

This project timeline was established in March 2012 and is subject to change without notice, based on any number of conditions. We will update the timeline as conditions change.

Environmental Remediation

PG&E is reviewing past and beginning new environmental studies to ensure a thorough understanding of environmental conditions at the property. We will investigate areas underneath the structures once they are demolished. Where necessary, we will conduct remediation, working closely with state and local regulatory agencies. Remediation is expected to take several years. Throughout this process, we will share project details with the community.

About the Contractor

Cleveland Wrecking, a subsidiary of URS Corp, a multi-national design, engineering and construction company, was selected for its overall safety record within the demolition industry, a commitment to working with woman, minority or disabled veteran subcontractors, cost and a comprehensive plan for salvaging scrap metals.

Contact Information

For media inquiries related to the demolition and cleanup of the site, please call the PG&E 24-hour media line at 415-973-5000.

Customers that have questions can call PG&E’s 24-hour customer support line at 1-800-743-5000.

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