The Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) subsidiary of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) on Aug. 14 asked the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission for approval of the installation of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology for NOx reduction at Rockport Unit 1.
Under the federal Clean Air Act and a related Consent Decree executed with the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and other parties, I&M must retrofit Rockport Unit 1 with SCR technology by Dec. 31, 2017, to continue operation of this unit.
The Rockport coal plant, featuring two 1,300-MW units, is a cornerstone of I&M’s generation fleet, providing low-cost generation to I&M’s customers, the utility noted. Under the same decree, I&M plans to shut its smaller, coal-fired Tanners Creek power plant in Indiana.
Rockport Unit 1 was placed in service in 1984 and Rockport Unit 2 in 1989, which is relatively young for coal-fired generation. I&M jointly owns the two Rockport units with AEP Generating Co. (AEG), which is another subsidiary of AEP. AEG sells 70% of its 50% share to I&M under a unit power agreement approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the remaining 30% is sold to Kentucky Power, an operating company affiliate of I&M.
“The Rockport Unit 1 SCR Project is a single project,” the application noted. “The initial investment and ongoing operating costs are equally shared between I&M and AEG as joint owners of Rockport Unit 1. Ultimately I&M incurs 50% of the overall associated costs as an owner (I&M Ownership Share) and 35% of the overall associated costs as a purchaser according to the terms of the I&M and AEG FERC approved unit power agreement (I&M Allocated Share).”