Report shows major progress so far on Flint Creek coal plant retrofits

New air emissions controls for the coal-fired Flint Creek power plant are well into construction and due for operation in May 2016, said Garver LLC, the independent monitor for the project hired by the American Electric Power Service Corp. unit of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP).

A Dec. 29 report from Garver was filed on Jan. 14 at the Arkansas Public Service Commission, which had approved the project in July 2013.

The air project includes the installation of an Alstom Novel Integrated Desulphurization (NID) system to comply with the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) and in anticipation of the Best Available Retrofit Technology (BART) Rule. The NID system and associated equipment are to be constructed adjacent to and on the south side of Flint Creek Unit 1. The project also includes an Activated Carbon Injection (ACI) system between the NID and the Unit 1 burners. The conceptual drawings for the system are attached to the report.

AEP has secured a one-year extension to the MATS deadline and has established design, procurement, and construction schedules that will bring the upgraded plant fully on line by May 29, 2016. Garver conducted a site visit in conjunction with the monthly construction progress meeting on Nov. 19, 2014. Photographs from the site visits are included in this report.

Brasfield & Gorrie (B&G) continued work on the civil bid package during November. All major foundations were completed in October leaving B&G to work on miscellaneous foundations and backfill activities. Its subcontractor, Oil Capital Electric, continued worked on duct banks near the by-product area. Babcock and Wilcox Construction Co. (BWCC) continued to erect structural steel on the NID during November 2014. Ductwork in the NID was set in place. BWCC continues ground assembly of ductwork and hoppers for the NID in the laydown yard. Work in the ID Fan area and structural steel on the electrical building has begun.

Financial metrics for the project continue to track for the project to be completed under budget. The overall budget for the FGD project is $389.9m. This budget includes design, construction, and procurement. The project had spent 49% of the budget through November 2014. The forecasts indicate that the project will be completed under budget by $6.4m.

AEP subsidiary Southwestern Electric Power Co. and Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corp. each own 50% of the single-unit, 528-MW plant. SWEPCO operates the facility. 

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.