Lima Energy revamps plan for Ohio gasification/power project

Lima Energy is proposing sweeping new changes to a certificate first granted in 2002 by the Ohio Power Siting Board for a gasification-based power project in Lima, Ohio, that has gone through many changes, including abandoned early-stage construction mid last decade.

Currently pending at the board is a June 25 application from Lima Energy for the changes. In 2012, the board had extended the term of the certificate to September of this year.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency issued a Permit To Install and Operate (PTIO) on April 25 for the modified project. “This Synthetic Minor (non-PSD) Permit represents the authorization by Ohio EPA to commence construction of the waste heat recovery based generating elements of the Facility, but not the planned combined cycle gas turbine (‘CCGT’) power generation component, an application for which will be filed separately with Ohio EPA,” Lima Energy noted.

“The purpose of this Application is to seek approval of the reconfiguration of the proposed Facility,” the added in the June 25 application filed at the board. “Although the original application described a 580 MW gross electric generation facility, current plans revise the makeup of the electric power generation components of the overall Facility. The initial component of the reconfigured power plant will utilize waste heat recovery steam generation to produce electric energy, primarily for site-load purposes. The Facility, due primarily to the addition of Fischer-Tropsch (Gas-To-Liquids or GTL) technology for the production of Ultra Clean Synthetic Crude (‘UCSC’), is expected to generate as much as 100 MW of waste heat recovery steam turbine power in the initial phase, and perhaps 250 MW with the addition of the second phase of UCSC development.”

If commercially viable, any excess generation from each respective phase will be exported. In addition to the waste heat recovery steam turbine component, the Lima facility also plans to incorporate a combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) generation component. The timing of this component will depend on finalizing commercial terms for this generation capacity.

Specifically, the June 25 application reconfigures the facility as follows:

  • Replace the integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) generation with a two-component power plant and a gasification-based gas-to-liquid (GTL) process to produce Ultra Clean Synthetic Crude (UCSC) and waste heat to electric generation.
  • The UCSC production will be implemented in two phases. The first UCSC phase will include the first component of the power plant – a steam turbine generator (STG) with a nameplate capacity of about 250 MW, which will utilize waste heat from both phases of the UCSC process. The STG will be sized to utilize the waste heat from both the first and second phases of the planned UCSC production.
  • The second power plant component can be envisioned as the third phase of the project. This phase is the installation of a natural gas fueled 2×1 7FA size CCGT generation unit. The CCGT portion of the power plant is expected to have a capacity of 525 MW (gross). The CCGT generation unit is not reliant on the UCSC production at the facility.
  • The combined potential gross electric energy generation capacity of the completed facility is estimated to be 775 MW, comprised of 525 MW CCGT and up to approximately 250 MW STG. Net export, following complete installation of both components, is expected to be approximately 610 MW, comprised of 510 MW from the CCGT and up to 100 MW from the STG, if steam generation from UCSC production is sufficient.

Solid feedstocks needed for gasification, natural gas for the CCGT 

The natural gas supply requirements for the two UCSC components are relatively modest, and are expected to only require service from existing capacity. New natural gas service, in the range of 81,000 decatherms per day to support the CCGT, will not be needed until the CCGT component is initiated, the timing of which will depend on market conditions.

An Interconnection Service Agreement with PJM Interconnection will be initiated once the scale of the combined export quantity is finalized. Interconnection with the AEP Southwest Lima Station (formerly the West Lima Substation) will be required to receive energy for start up of the first UCS phase. PJM has advised that it will not require any approval related to the interconnection for energy backflow purposes.

Feedstock materials for UCSC production are petroleum coke (petcoke), coal and renewable biomass. Lima Energy has entered into an agreement with an adjacent refinery for receipt of petcoke, which will be delivered to the UCSC production facility, predominantly via conveyor. Additional quantities of petcoke, as well as coal and renewable biomass, will be received by rail or truck. Petcoke, and potentially coal, will be stored in the main feedstock storage building, while other feedstock components will be received into silos for proportional blending into other feedstock.

CO2 routinely captured during the manufacture of the UCSC product will be compressed, dried, and sold to a third party at an on-site custody transfer metering point. This third party intends to utilize the CO2 in Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) in central and eastern Ohio oil fields. The third party also anticipates, as a supplemental strategy to EOR for the management and sequester of the CO2, injecting a portion of the CO2 into the Mt Simon Sandstone, generally located west of Lima. The Mt. Simon is a deep geologic formation.

The June 25 application said project finance is anticipated in the early third quarter 2014, and Commercial Operation planned for 24-30 months later in late 2016 or early 2017.

Some site work has been done in the last couple of years

Lima Energy undertook removal of existing foundation and infrastructure, beginning in October 2012. By August 2013, approximately 170,000 tons of concrete at the former Lima Locomotive Works Site had been removed, crushed and stockpiled for reuse on site.

Lima Energy said it has engaged Gasification Engineering Corp. (GEC) to provide Engineering, Procurement, and Construction contractor services, to design and build the facility. Lima Energy is also engaging GEC to provide Operation and Maintenance services for the facility.

GEC engaged Kokosing Construction Co., headquartered in Westerville, Ohio, in June 2013 to provide Design-Build general contracting services to design and construct the main Lima Energy Facility. Kokosing will engage an engineering firm to assist with the Design-Build based project. Kokosing has graded most of the site and begun preliminary engineering and planning for implementation of the project.

“The Statement of Need in the original application still applies,” the June 25 application said. “Regulatory pressures on power generation increasingly favor alternative generation (e.g. waste heat recovery) and natural gas fueled combined cycle (‘CCGT’). As the utility industry considers curtailment of older coal based generating stations, we believe that replacement generation will be predominately fulfilled by CCGT units. Although the initial component of this Facility will be waste heat recovery steam turbine generation, the major component of power generation is planned as a CCGT in the range of 500 MW net.”

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.