May 15, 2018 Read More →

Indianapolis Utility Continues Shift Toward Gas and Renewables

Platts:

The startup of Indianapolis Power & Light Company’s Eagle Valley combined-cycle natural gas plant marks a shift toward gas as the utility’s largest power generation source, replacing coal, the company said Monday.

“Our future is focused on accelerating cleaner, smarter and affordable options for our customers and we are proud of the efforts we’ve made over the last few years to significantly reduce our dependence on coal and focus toward a more balanced energy mix,” Craig Jackson, IPL president and CEO, said in a statement. IPL is a subsidiary of Arlington, Virginia-based AES.

The 671 MW CCGT gas plant, about 30 miles southwest of downtown Indianapolis, began commercial operation April 28, IPL said. The new power station reduces the rate of “most emissions” by 98% compared to the six coal- and oil-fired units it replaced at the site. The old generating equipment and water intake structures were “rendered inoperable” for safety reasons, Claire Dalton, IPL spokeswoman, said in an email Monday.

IPL’s request to invest more than $600 million in the plant was approved by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission in 2014, and the company has a pending regulatory rate review at the IURC to place the Eagle Valley plant into the rate base, Dalton said.

An ongoing shift away from coal toward gas and renewable energy sources is taking place at the corporate and state level. IPL’s power generation mix, which in 2007 consisted of 79% coal, 14% gas and 7% oil, is projected in 2018 to reach 45% gas, 44% coal, 8% wind, 2% solar and only 1% oil, according to the company’s website.

In 2017, 60% of Indiana’s 200 MW of incremental generation capacity was powered by renewable sources, with the other 40% powered by gas, according to EIA. And IPL projects its power generation mix will transition to 38% gas, 31% wind and 26% coal by 2036, with the remainder supplied by 4% solar and 1% oil.

More: Indiana Natural Gas Plant Repowering Marks Shift From Coal To Gas, Renewables

 

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