Southern Power seeks permit on gas-fired Trinidad project in Texas

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality put out a notice on Jan. 7 about a Dec. 23 application by Southern Power for an air permit on a new power plant.

“Southern Power Company, has applied to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) for issuance of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) Air Quality Permit Number GHGPSDTX125, which would authorize construction of the Trinidad Generating Facility,” said the notice, without adding details about the Henderson County facility.

Notable is that last year, TCEQ took over greenhouse gas permitting in the state from EPA Region 6 after the state wrote its own greenhouse gas permitting program. Many, though not all, of the power developers pursuing permits at EPA dropped those applications at the federal agency and switched over to the new TCEQ program. The EPA Region 6 website shows that Southern Power was one of the developers that switched its permitting for the Trinidad project over to TCEQ.

Southern Power, a unit of Southern Co. (NYSE: SO), had in June 2013 filed an application with EPA Region 6 for a greenhouse gas permit for a 530-MW, natural gas-fired combined-cycle power plant in Henderson County to be called the Trinidad Generating Facility (TGF). The proposed plant would consist of one natural gas-fired combustion turbine generator, exhausting to a heat recovery steam generator (HRSG), with supplemental firing capability to produce steam to drive a steam turbine, and associated support facilities. The combustion turbine planned for this site, at least at that point, was the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) J model, with a nominal maximum combined-cycle gross electric power output of approximately 530 MW.

It would be fueled by pipeline-quality natural gas. “SPC has determined that a combined-cycle unit that will produce a nominal maximum gross electric power output of approximately 530 MW is needed to reliably and economically meet the needs of SPC’s customers that will be served by this project,” the application noted. “In addition, to most effectively meet these needs, the combined-cycle unit must be capable of operating in a range of modes, which includes the use of duct burners and evaporative cooling.”

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.