LEPA starts up 64-MW gas plant in Louisiana

The Louisiana Energy and Power Authority (LEPA) said May 22 that it has dedicated its new 64-MW natural gas fired combined-cycle gas turbine generating plant (CCGT) in Morgan City, Louisiana.

The $120.7m project is the first power plant to be built in the southern region of Louisiana in some 40 years, and the first electrical power plant to be built by LEPA.

Six LEPA member municipalities: Morgan City, Houma, Jonesville, Plaquemine, Rayne and Vidalia, have entered into long term power sales agreements for the plant’s power output.

Plant owners held a dedication ceremony May 20.

“The plant is expected to supply these municipalities with competitively priced electrical power that will reduce their reliance on older, more costly electric supply options,” said LEPA General Manager Cordell Grand.

“The CCGT technology used in this plant is superior to conventional fossil fueled generating plants because of its higher efficiency, lower environmental impact, lower capital cost, and shorter construction time,” Grand said. “Because the plant is fuel efficient, it will help stabilize the cost of electrical power for these municipalities,” Grand added.

A 1.3 mile, 8-inch natural gas pipeline was constructed to interconnect the plant to the Texas Gas Transmission LLC pipeline, according to the news release.

The power plant also utilizes reclaimed water discharged from the nearby Morgan City Waste Water Treatment Plant, conserving treated water.

Created by the Louisiana Legislature in 1979, LEPA consists of 17 Louisiana municipalities that each maintain their own independent municipal electrical system. LEPA is a joint-action agency working to provide its member communities with firm, stable sources of electrical power at the lowest possible cost.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.