ecoPower looks to restart construction for Kentucky biomass plant

The Kentucky Division for Air Quality on March 6 put out for comment a November 2014 application from ecoPower Generation–Hazard LLC for renewal of a Title V/Synthetic Minor Construction/Operating Permit for a wood (biomass)-fired facility in Chavies, Kentucky.

In June 2014, ecoPower applied to the division for extension of the construction authority that was initially granted by the Title V permit issuance and extended in October 2011. In the renewal application, there are no proposed operational changes to the facility that may result in emissions increases.

Currently, the company is authorized to construct provided it commences construction on or before April 24, 2015. After a thorough review of the construction extension request and all of the relevant information, the division now proposes to grant an extension request.

This is a 745 MMBtu/hr wood-fired fluidized bed boiler (Babcock & Wilcox), generating a nominal rating of 58 MW through a steam turbine. The start-up fuel for the boiler is propane. Fuel will be supplied from sources of sawdust and sawmill waste, storm damage, timber harvesting residue, and whole trees harvested as part of timber management strategies. Sand will be used as a fluidized bed material. The boiler is to be equipped with a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system, dry sorbent injection and a fabric filter.

One permit document noted that construction commenced in April 2013, with proposed recommencement in 2016.

The developer is also working with PJM Interconnection on this project, with a queue number of Y2-086, which would connect to American Electric Power‘s (NYSE: AEP) Engle 69-kV substation via a 1.4-mile transmission line. “The proposed location for the generating facility is at the Coal Fields Industrial Park, 1244 Coal Fields Industrial Drive, Chavies, Perry County, Kentucky,” said a system impact study on the project from PJM dated October 2014. “The facility is expected to obtain backfeed no earlier than 8/15/15, in anticipation of achieving Commercial Operation in early 2016.”

The Kentucky Public Service Commission in October 2013 approved Kentucky Power’s Renewable Energy Purchase Agreement with ecoPower Generation-Hazard for power out of this project. Kentucky Power is a unit of AEP.

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.