On April 1, 1984, the newly constructed Pine Flat Power Plant began full commercial operation.  In the 40 years since then, it has been in continuous operation. KRCD has created a new 4-minute video to highlight the Power Plant’s beginnings and enduring value to the public, told from the perspectives of people involved in its creation, leadership, and operation.

Twenty years after its launch, the Power Plant was renamed to honor 29-year Kings River Conservation District General Manager Jeff L. Taylor, becoming the Jeff L. Taylor Pine Flat Power Plant.  In an excerpt from his July 8, 2001, Letter to the Editor printed in the Fresno Bee newspaper, Mr. Taylor said, “KRCD’s Pine Flat plant is a significant contributor to California’s electrical energy supply during the hot summer months when power demands are greatest.  The plant’s three units have a combined installed capacity of 165 megawatts…Pine Flat power is all purchased by the California Department of Water Resources for use in operating the State Water Project.”

Mr. Taylor is widely recognized as the driving force behind making the Power Plant a reality.  In a January 8, 2003, Fresno Bee Newspaper article by Mark Grossi following Mr. Taylor’s passing, it says, “Before Mr. Taylor joined the district, the power plant idea had been studied, but the project had not moved beyond the discussion stages, officials said. “Nobody could seem to get anything done,” said Garvin White (a past Board member who was on the Board when Mr. Taylor joined the district. “He is someone who is sure to be mentioned in the history of the Kings River, which goes back over a century.”

The electricity sold from the Power Plant to DWR helps operate the State Water Project, “…the nation’s largest state-owned water and power generator.  The water storage and delivery system delivers clean water to 27 million Californians, 750,000 acres of farmland, and businesses throughout the state” (water.ca.gov).

The Power Plant’s three hydroelectric turbines have a combined power generation capacity of 165 megawatts (MW). During the 2023 water year the Power Plant produced 4.5 million MW of electricity, the fifth largest power generation year in the Power Plant’s 40-year history.  Design of a new, smaller unit is underway to boost the Power Plant’s hydropower generation capability.  The smaller unit will have power generation capacity of 6 MW and will use flows that are too low for the larger units to use.  Water already passing through the Power Plant will be put to further use generating additional renewable green energy.

The dedication and hard work of KRCD staff and critical support of its Board of Directors over decades are key factors in its success. KRCD is proud of the Jeff L. Taylor Pine Flat Power Plant’s 40 years of carbon-free energy production and looks forward to increasing its capability in the near future, and for decades to come.