Bayside Gannon power station

From Global Energy Monitor

Bayside Gannon power station (also known as the Gannon power station) is a retired 1,302-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station in the state of Florida, United States.[1] In 2003-2004, it was converted into the natural gas-fuelled H.L. Culbreath power station.


The map below shows the location of the power station in the state of Florida, United States.

Loading map...


The Gannon power station consisted of six coal-fired units built during the 1950s and 1960s, all owned and built by the Tampa Electric Company (also known as TECO Energy, a subsidiary of Emera). In 2003, Units 1 through 4 were placed on long term reserve standby (LTRS), and retired from coal operation in January 2004. Units 5 and 6 were converted into natural gas-fueled power plants for the new Bayside Power Station in 2003 and 2004, respectively.[2] At the time, it was TECO's second-largest power plant and employed around 250 people.[3]

In 1999, there was a hydrogen gas leak in Unit 6 of the Gannon Station, which killed three people, injured dozens more, and caused all six generating units at the coal-fired Gannon power plant to temporarily shut down.[3] [4] Tampa Electric was fined $25,200 for the incident. In 2017, there was another industrial accident at the nearby Big Bend Power Station (also owned by TECO), which killed two people and critically injured four others.[5]

Pollution Concerns

Together with another of TECO's coal-fired power plants, the Big Bend Power Station, Gannon emitted around 240,000 tons of smog and soot in 1998, making TECO one of the worst polluters in the state at the time.[6] TECO was targeted by the EPA and ended up negotiating a settlement with the agency and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. The company agreed to pay a $3.5-million fine and invested $1 billion in emissions-controlling equipment, most of which was diverted to converting the Gannon Power Station into the H.L. Culbreath Bayside Power Station.[6]

Conversion into H.L. Culbreath Bayside Power Station

To green their operations, TECO decided to repower the Gannon Power Station by ceasing coal-fired operations and changing the plant's fuel source to natural gas. The resulting power plant was named the H.L. Culbreath Bayside Power Station (also known as the Bayside Power Station). Units 5 and 6 were repurposed in 2003-2004 to become Bayside Unit 1 and 2, and in 2009, four 60-megawatt natural gas-fired peaking units were installed to add to Bayside's capacity. The plant integrates seven combustion turbines and seven heat recovery steam generators to produce around 1,800 megawatts of electricity.[7] TECO cites several reasons for their decision to repower the plant, including an increase in customer growth (and increase in demand for reliable electricity), the increased ability to meet stronger environmental regulations, the growing availability of natural gas from proposed pipelines, and the chance to reuse existing plant equipment.[8] According to TECO, converting to natural gas has reduced the power plant's nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide emissions, and mercury pollution by approximately 99 percent, while reducing particulate matter emissions by more than 93%, all compared to 1998 levels.[7] [9]

Project Details

  • Sponsor: Tampa Electric Co
  • Parent company: Emera
  • Location: the state of Florida, United States
  • Coordinates: 27.9072, -82.4231 (exact)
  • Coal type: Bituminous[2]
  • Coal source: Unknown
  • Gross generating capacity (retired): 1,302 MW
    • Unit 1: Coal-fired subcritical, 125 MW (start-up in 1957)
    • Unit 2: Coal-fired subcritical, 125 MW (start-up in 1958)
    • Unit 3: Coal-fired subcritical, 180 MW (start-up in 1960)
    • Unit 4: Coal-fired subcritical, 188 MW (start-up in 1963)
    • Unit 5: Coal-fired subcritical, 239 MW (start-up in 1965)
    • Unit 6: Coal-fired subcritical, 446 MW (start-up in 1967)
  • Employees (during 1999): around 250

Articles and Resources


  1. "A new era in energy production for Tampa Electric; first utility to commit to U.S. EPA and Florida DEP clean-up launches Bayside Power Station". Tampa Electric. May 1, 2003. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Form 10-K - TECO Energy, Inc". SEC. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  3. 3.0 3.1 CBS News (April 8, 1999). "Hydrogen Leak Sparked Blast". CBS News. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  4. "Tampa Electric". Tampa Electric Website. April 9, 1999. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  5. Haag, Matthew (June 29, 2017). "2 Killed in Power Plant Explosion Near Tampa, Florida (Published 2017)". New York Times. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Keller, Amy (September 1, 2005). "Coming Clean". Florida Trend. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Bayside Power Station". Tampa Electric. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  8. "H.L. Culbreath Bayside Power Station Tour" (PDF). Skyscrubber. March 21, 2011. Retrieved May 13, 2021.
  9. "TECO ENERGY, INC - Annual Report Page 74". 2011. Retrieved 2021-05-13.