Apex Texas Power nears water permit for gas-fired project in Cherokee County

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality said in an April 16 notice that it intends to approve a water permit for Apex Texas Power LLC for the Neches Station, a natural gas-fired combined-cycle electric generating facility.

The company has applied to the commission for a new permit, Texas Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (TPDES) Permit No. WQ0005144000, to authorize the discharge of utility wastewater, process wastewater, and stormwater at a daily average dry weather flow not to exceed 1,500,000 gallons per day and stormwater at an intermittent and variable flow via Outfall 001. The TCEQ received this application in October 2014.

The completed facility will be located east of the town of Cuney, at the southeast corner of the intersection of Farm-to-Market Road 855 and County Road 3415, in Cherokee County, Texas. The notice doesn’t describe the power plant itself.

The project contact listed in the TCEQ notice is: Apex Texas Power LLC, Curtis Miles, 903-926-3793.

Apex Texas Power was pursuing an air permit from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for either a simple cycle plant of 930 MW (gross) in capacity, or a combined cycle plant of 794 MW (gross) of capacity. EPA’s Region 6 office had in June 2014 gotten a greenhouse gas permit application for this project. Apex Texas Power’s Neches Station project is to be located near Cuney in Cherokee County. The air permit application added that the project was being pursued under two scenarios:

  • Scenario 1 – is made up of four combustion turbine generators (generic F-Class models) operating in simple-cycle mode with a combined capacity of 930 MW (gross).
  • Scenario 2 – consists of only two combustion turbine generators that would initially operate in simple-cycle mode only, with combined-cycle capability later added with the addition of heat recovery steam generators and a steam turbine, with a total capacity of 794 MW (gross).

Notable is that last fall the EPA turned greenhouse gas permitting in Texas over to the commission. TCEQ records show that Apex Texas Power is currently seeking three permits for this project: the water permit now out for notice; an air permit for conventional emissions; and a greenhouse gas air permit. Documents on the air permit applications aren’t available on-line.

Said the website of Apex Power Group LLC about this project: “Apex Texas Power is developing Neches Station to support system reliability needed for the growth of wind and other renewable generation resources. The plant will be sized from 450 MW to 900 MW of quick start, efficient, gas fired combustion turbines that are capable of reaching full output in 13 minutes!”

The Apex website also says: “Apex Power Group, LLC was formed in 2007 after the Principals had worked together on development of Panoche Energy Center. The team formed an instant connection and found that our strengths and abilities were comprehensive and complimentary for the ongoing development of power projects. Gary Chandler, David Jenkins and Michael King leveraged their significant Power and Electric Utility experience to form Apex Power Group. We now have a combined power experience exceeding 100 years.”

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.