Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Speaking of Shutting Down Coal Plants...

Earlier I mentioned Dominion's plan to replace two aging coal facilities in Virginia with a new gas-fired plant, but even bigger news came out that Chicago will see an early retirement of two controversial coal-fired plants on its South Side.  The Fisk plant will close in December 2012 and the Crawford plant will close in 2014.  The two plants are merchant plants operated by Midwest Generation that produce power that is sold out of state.  Midwest has owned the plants since 1999, but they were put into service in 1958 (Crawford) and 1968 (Fisk).

Additionally, merchant generator GenOn announced today that it will be shutting down eight coal-fired power plants (with a little oil-fired power in there) in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey between June 2012 and May 2015 because the cost of upgrading them to meet environmental standards outweighed the economic return.

Over the past several years, there have been around 100 coal plant retirements announced, either because of economic reasons or because of political pressure from environmental groups.

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