Prairie State among new power units brought online in June

FERC said in an Aug. 7 update on energy projects nationwide covering the month of June that a number of power plants have come onstream, including the first of two 800-MW units at the coal-fired Prairie State power plant in Illinois.

American Municipal Power and other project backers have brought online the first 800-MW unit at Prairie State. Electricity output is contracted to the city of Geneva and Columbia Water and Light, FERC said. A second phase with an additional 800 MW is expected to come online in December 2012.

The power plant gets coal from the new Lively Grove underground mine next door, which is owned by the power plant partners, with mining advice from Peabody Energy (NYSE: BTU), the nation’s top coal producer, which first developed the Prairie State project.

Other projects mentioned by FERC are:

  • Hess Corp. and an affiliate of ArcLight Capital Partners LLC have brought online the 512-MW Bayonne Energy Center in Hudson County, N.J. This facility consists of eight 64-MW quick-start Rolls Royce natural gas-fired units. It is a “black start” energy source that provides power during sudden peaks in energy needs to New York City (in NYISO Zone J), without exporting any of New Jersey’s existing power supply.
  • Idaho Power’s 300-MW Langley Gulch plant in Payette County, Idaho, is online. This facility uses combined cycle combustion turbine technology and consists of two turbines, one fired by natural gas, the other by steam from the exhaust heat.
  • Vineland Municipal Electric Utility’s 75-MW Howard M. Down 11 in Cumberland County, N.J., is online. This project is fired by natural gas and residual fuel oil.
  • Duke Energy’s (NYSE: DUK) 131-MW Cimarron II Windpower Project Phase I in Gray County, Kan., is online. The electricity generated is contracted to Kansas City Power and Light and the Tennessee Valley Authority. The second phase of the project with 165.6 MW is expected to be operational by November 2012.
  • Invenergy LLC’s 213-MW Gratiot County Wind project in Gratiot, Mich., is online. The electricity generated is purchased by Detroit Edison and parent DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) on long-term contracts.
  • Goldwind Science and Technology’s 190-MW Shady Oaks Wind Farm in Lee County, Ill., is online. It consists of 74 wind turbines. Commonwealth Edison and Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL) have long-term contracts to purchase the electricity from this plant.
  • PG&E’s 20-MW Huron Solar Station in Fresno County, Calif., is online. This project is built under PG&E’s 500-MW Solar PV Program.
  • US Geothermal Inc.’s 12-MW geothermal San Emidio Project Unit 1 in Washoe County, Nev., is online. This electricity is purchased by NV Energy (NYSE: NVE) under long-term contract. There are two other phases in development with an expected online date of December 2014.
  • Ormat Technologies Inc.’s 7.5-MW geothermal Jersey Valley Geothermal Phase 2 in Pershing County, Nev., is online. Jersey Valley Phase 1 came online in May 2011. The total capacity of Jersey Valley is now 22.5 MW. The electricity is sold to NV Energy under long-term contracts, FERC noted.
About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.