PLAINFIELD, IND. - Duke Energy's Edwardsport Generating Station has begun commercial operation.
Located in Knox County, Ind., near Vincennes, the 618-megawatt advanced technology coal gasification plant is one of the world's cleanest coal-fired power generating facilities.
The plant uses advanced technology to gasify coal, strip out pollutants, and then burn that cleaner gas to produce electricity. The technology substantially reduces the environmental impact of burning coal to produce electric power.
Photos of the new facility can be accessed on Flickr at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dukeenergy/sets/72157633543207072/
"Coal has powered Indiana for more than a century," said Duke Energy Indiana President Doug Esamann. "But today's air quality standards require us to use that fuel in a cleaner, more efficient way."
Edwardsport turns coal into a cleaner-burning fuel and enables us to continue using an abundant local resource. Edwardsport completed the necessary steps to be declared commercial on June 7.
As the company testified before state regulators, this is the first time the technology has been used on this scale, so the plant is expected to build up to its long-term level of availability over the next 15 months. It will provide Indiana customers with power for decades.
"Edwardsport replaces about 500 megawatts of older coal-fired generation that we recently retired or expect to retire soon due to new EPA regulations," Esamann said. "The average age of coal-fired plants on our Indiana system is 45 years, and this facility is key to modernizing our system and filling the gap left by plant retirements."
- Produce 10 times as much power as the former plant at Edwardsport, yet with about 70 percent fewer emissions of sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and particulates combined.
- Use excess steam that would normally be wasted to power a second turbine and increase plant efficiency and output.
- Reduce carbon dioxide emissions per megawatt-hour by nearly half compared to the plant it replaces.
- Generate marketable byproducts. The plant will produce sulfur and slag for agricultural and construction materials. Any revenues from marketable byproducts will go to customers.
- Use less water than a conventional coal-fired plant.
Edwardsport also has been an important job-creator during a down economy. As one of the largest construction projects ever undertaken in Indiana, about 3,500 construction workers and other professionals worked on-site during peak construction. Construction began in 2008.
The plant will employ about 140 full-time workers. In addition, the 1.7 million to 1.9 million tons of coal the plant will use each year will support an estimated 170 mining jobs.
Duke Energy Indiana's operations provide approximately 6,900 megawatts of owned electric capacity to approximately 790,000 customers, making it the states largest electric supplier.
Duke Energy is the largest electric power holding company in the United States with more than $110 billion in total assets. Its regulated utility operations serve approximately 7.2 million electric customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest. Its commercial power and international business segments own and operate diverse power generation assets in North America and Latin America, including a growing portfolio of renewable energy assets in the United States.
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 250 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at: www.duke-energy.com.
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Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in any forward-looking statement include, but are not limited to: state, federal and foreign legislative and regulatory initiatives, including costs of compliance with existing and future environmental requirements, as well as rulings that affect cost and investment recovery or have an impact on rate structures; the ability to recover eligible costs and earn an adequate return on investment through the regulatory process; the costs of retiring Duke Energy Florida's Crystal River Unit 3 could prove to be more extensive than is currently identified, all costs associated with the retirement Crystal River Unit 3 asset, including replacement power may not be fully recoverable through the regulatory process; the ability to maintain relationships with customers, employees or suppliers post-merger; the ability to successfully integrate the Progress Energy businesses and realize cost savings and any other synergies expected from the merger; the risk that the credit ratings of the combined company or its subsidiaries may be different from what the companies expect; the impact of compliance with material restrictions of conditions related to the Progress Energy merger imposed by regulators could exceed our expectations; costs and effects of legal and administrative proceedings, settlements, investigations and claims; industrial, commercial and residential growth or decline in the respective Duke Energy Registrants' service territories, customer base or customer usage patterns; additional competition in electric markets and continued industry consolidation; political and regulatory uncertainty in other countries in which Duke Energy conducts business; the influence of weather and other natural phenomena on each of the Duke Energy Registrants' operations, including the economic, operational and other effects of storms, hurricanes, droughts and tornadoes; the ability to successfully operate electric generating facilities and deliver electricity to customers; the ability to recover, in a timely manner, if at all, costs associated with future significant weather events through the regulatory process; the impact on the Duke Energy Registrants' facilities and business from a terrorist attack, cyber security threats and other catastrophic events; the inherent risks associated with the operation and potential construction of nuclear facilities, including environmental, health, safety, regulatory and financial risks; the timing and extent of changes in commodity prices, interest rates and foreign currency exchange rates and the ability to recover such costs through the regulatory process, where appropriate; unscheduled generation outages, unusual maintenance or repairs and electric transmission system constraints; the performance of electric generation facilities and of projects undertaken by Duke Energy's non-regulated businesses; the results of financing efforts, including the Duke Energy Registrants' ability to obtain financing on favorable terms, which can be affected by various factors, including the respective Duke Energy Registrants' credit ratings and general economic conditions; declines in the market prices of equity securities and resultant cash funding requirements for Duke Energy's defined benefit pension plans and nuclear decommissioning trust funds; the level of creditworthiness of counterparties to Duke Energy Registrants' transactions; employee workforce factors, including the potential inability to attract and retain key personnel; growth in opportunities for the respective Duke Energy Registrants' business units, including the timing and success of efforts to develop domestic and international power and other projects; construction and development risks associated with the completion of Duke Energy Registrants' capital investment projects in existing and new generation facilities, including risks related to financing, obtaining and complying with terms of permits, meeting construction budgets and schedules, and satisfying operating and environmental performance standards, as well as the ability to recover costs from ratepayers in a timely manner or at all; the subsidiaries ability to pay dividends or distributions to Duke Energy Corporation holding company (the Parent); the effect of accounting pronouncements issued periodically by accounting standard-setting bodies; the impact of potential goodwill impairments; the ability to reinvest retained earnings of foreign subsidiaries or repatriate such earnings on a tax free basis; and the ability to successfully complete future merger, acquisition or divestiture plans.
Additional risks and uncertainties are identified and discussed in Duke Energy's and its subsidiaries' reports filed with the SEC and available at the SEC's website at www.sec.gov. In light of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, the events described in the forward-looking statements might not occur or might occur to a different extent or at a different time than Duke Energy has described. Duke Energy undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.