In late 2011 AES Southland President Eric Pendergraft announced to the Redondo Beach city council that AES Redondo Beach will apply to the California Energy Commission (CEC) for a license to repower the plant that sits on Harbor Drive. Pendergraft suggested AES might replace the existing plant with a much smaller, more efficient facility. He also suggested that there could be a considerable amount of the current property that AES might not need for the new plant.
In early 2012 the city council took up the matter of the future of the power plant. A lot of citizens came forward and expressed strong feelings about getting rid of the electrical generating facility altogether. The council meetings in which the power plant was discussed led to a motion that the council would oppose the construction of a new power plant on the AES property. In April the council voted to continue the matter until July.
In spite of a variety of opinions on some of the particulars, it’s fair to say, none of the people who live in the community want a power plant here. I don’t know anyone who works at the plant, but I’d bet the only people who don’t want it to go away are people who work there.
The AES site is currently zoned for a power plant and a park. The zoning was changed in fall of 2011 when Measure G was passed. Advocates for a power plant-free Redondo Beach have suggested the city should rezone the site again, this time excluding a power plant.
So agreeing the community doesn’t want a power plant is the easy part. The hard part’s figuring out what to do about it.