Renewed Eagle Valley power plant permit adds gas, subtracts coal

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management on Dec. 26 issued a renewed Title V air permit for the Eagle Valley plant of Indianapolis Power & Light that covers plans for new gas-fired generation and the shutdown of the coal units at the site.

“Before the startup of the Combined Cycle Combustion Turbine Generation Facility, the Four coal-fired boilers identified as Units 3, 4, 5 and 6, Two No. 2 fuel oil fired boilers identified as Units 1 and 2, one distillate fuel oil fired generator, identified as PR-10, Coal transfer facilities, Rail car unloading, coal pile unloading, and coal storage and the Coal crushers, identified as 1A and 1B shall be permanently shut down and decommissioned,” said the permit renewal.

The planned combined cycle facility emission units will be:

  • Two natural gas-fired combustion turbine units each with a natural gas-fired duct burner identified as EU-1 and EU-2, permitted in 2013, each with a total rated heat input capacity of 2,542 MMBtu/hr; with NOx emissions controlled by low combustion burner design and Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR), and each with an oxidation catalyst system to reduce emissions of CO and VOCs including formaldehyde, and exhausting to stacks S-1 and S-2.
  • One natural gas-fired auxiliary boiler, identified as emission unit EU-3, permitted in 2013, with a rated heat input capacity of 79.3 MMBtu/hr, equipped with low NOx burners (LNB) with flue gas recirculation (FGR) to reduce NOx emissions exhausting to stack S-3.
  • One natural gas-fired Dew Point Heater, identified as emission unit EU-4, permitted in 2013, with a rated heat input capacity of 20.8 MMBtu/hr exhausting to stack S-4.

The existing coal units, targeted for shutdown to comply with the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) and other regulations, are:

  • One tangentially-fired wet-bottom coal boiler, identified as Unit 3, constructed in 1951, with a design heat input capacity of 524 million Btu per hour (MMBtu/hr).
  • One tangentially-fired dry-bottom coal fired boiler (Unit 4), constructed in 1953, with a design heat input capacity of 741 million Btu per hour (MMBtu/hr).
  • One tangentially-fired dry-bottom coal boiler (Unit 5), constructed in 1953, with a design heat input capacity of 741 million Btu per hour (MMBtu/hr).
  • One tangentially-fired dry-bottom coal boiler (Unit 6), constructed in 1956, with a design heat input capacity of 1,017 million Btu per hour (MMBtu/hr).

Indianapolis Power & Light (IPL) this past October had gotten a final air permit from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management specifically for the new gas-fired facilities. The new gas plant, needed in part to make up for the shutdown of some of IPL’s coal-fired capacity due to MATS, would include two nominal 192.5-MW combustion turbines with steam waste heat recovery to drive a nominal 271-MW steam turbine generator. The new facility would have a total nominal capacity of 656 MW (net). The exclusive fuel for the new combustion turbines will be natural gas.

IPL says its gas-heavy plan the best one for ratepayers

Despite criticisms from other parties, IPL said its plan to shut older, smaller coal units and replace them with new gas-fired capacity is the best idea for ratepayers. Several IPL officials provided Oct. 3 rebuttal testimony to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) in a certificate of need case started in April of this year. Among them was Herman Schkabla, IPL’s Director of Resource Planning.

In its April 29 application, the utility said this new CCGT capacity at Eagle Valley, with a range of 550 MW to 725 MW in size, would help it meet a forecasted need for additional generating capacity of about 744 MW by 2016 growing to 797 MW by 2020.

In the April 29 application, which was still awaiting final commission action as of Dec. 31, IPL requested that the commission approve various things, including:

  • grant to IPL approval to construct a 550-725 MW CCGT at IPL’s Eagle Valley Generating Station located in Morgan County Ind.;

  • grant to IPL approval to convert the coal-fired Units 5 and 6 at the Harding Street Generation Station located in Marion County, Ind., to natural gas;

  • approve the construction of transmission, pipeline and other facilities associated with the Eagle Valley CCGT and Harding Street 5 and 6 refueling; and

  • grant to IPL a necessity certificate to engage in the transportation of gas within Indiana for use by IPL in the operation of the CCGT.

IPL is a unit of AES Corp. (NYSE: AES).

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.