CMS details timeline for Thetford combined-cycle plant

CMS Energy (NYSE:CMS) expects to bring its roughly 700-MW Thetford combined-cycle gas plant online in Michigan in 2017 within a budget of roughly $750m, according to a recent company presentation.

CMS utility subsidiary Consumers Energy is developing the new unit to help replace various retiring coal units. The company provided details of its timeline during an Aug. 15 presentation at the Midwest Utilities Conference.

The slide presentation is included in an 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) dated Aug. 14.

The air permit, which actually envisions eventual development of a second 700-MW phase, was approved July 25. The certificate of need application for the plant was filed with the state July 12. The certificate application only seeks approval for one unit.

CMS expects to receive Michigan Public Service Commission approval of the certificate of need by early April 2014.

The award of major contracts for the facility could come later this year and the “full notice to proceed” for contractors is targeted for 2014 with certificate of need approval.

The company has yet to select an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor, a spokesperson told GenerationHub.

The new Thetford gas project is part of a 10-year, $15bn investment plan by CMS.

The Thetford project located in northern Genesee County, Mich., is expected to create 600 construction jobs. Consumers Energy owns the 230-acre Thetford Township site, which features access to high-volume natural gas delivery and high-voltage power transmission lines.

There is several small, 1970s vintage gas turbines located at the Thetford site. A couple of them are listed as being out of service.

In November 2012 the CMS subsidiary announced commercial operation of its 100-MW Lake Winds Park in Mason County. Development is also continuing in Tuscola County of its 150-MW Cross Winds project set for operation by late 2014.


About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at