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Indianapolis Power & Light Company (IPL) has announced plans to power the future needs of its customers by constructing thermal power plants in Indiana. IPL filed its request with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) to invest $631 million into a new combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power station near Martinsville.
IPL plans to retire six existing units at the Eagle Valley Generating Station and retire or refuel four at Harding Street Generating Station, with a combined total of 600 MW or 18 percent of the Company’s generation capacity. The new natural gas plant will generate about 650 MW of electricity more efficiently and with fewer environmental emissions.
The CCGT will reduce the rate of sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxide (NOx) and particulate matter emissions by more than 98 percent. Virtually all mercury, lead and fluoride emissions will be eliminated, and water use will be reduced by 97 percent. Plans are also underway to convert Harding Street Generating Units 5 and 6, totaling 200 MW, from burning coal to utilizing natural gas to create electricity. This project is also subject to IURC approval.
IPL CEO Ken Zagzebski said building a gas powered plant is the most affordable and reliable solution. “These replacement generation projects are a significant investment that is necessary in order to meet future electricity needs.” As a result of the new Mercury and Air Toxic Standards set by the EPA, IPL estimates customers could see costs of electricity increases of 2-3 percent, on an average, per year through 2018.