July 2, 2019 Read More →

Gibbons Creek owners make it official, Texas coal plant to close permanently in October

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):

Owners of the 470-MW, coal-fired Gibbons Creek Generating Station, which has been in mothball status, have decided to shut the plant permanently as of Oct. 23 despite tight supplies in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas and pricing changes designed to encourage generation owners to stay in the market.

ERCOT late June 28 issued a notice to market participants that it had received a Notification of Change of Generation Resource Designation, which the city of Garland, Texas, intended to change the status of the Gibbons Creek plant from mothballed “to a status of decommissioned and retired permanently as of October 23, 2019.” As the plant was in mothball status, its owner, the Texas Municipal Power Agency need take no further action with ERCOT to proceed with the permanent decommissioning.

Having come online in October 1983, the plant’s contract for supplies to the Texas cities of Bryan, Denton, Garland and Greenville ended in September 2018. The four cities own the power agency. Denton in November 2018 entered into power purchase agreements for 150 MW from two solar projects now in development.

The Gibbons Creek plant had been in mothball status since October 2018 with plans to resume operations seven or eight months later, but the city of Garland, which had contracted for about 221 MW of the plant’s capacity, decided instead to continue the mothball status indefinitely.

According to S&P Global Market Intelligence data, the Gibbons Creek plant’s capacity factor in 2017 was less than 39% and just over 40% in 2016. Its coal supply in 2018 came from Arch Coal Inc.’s Coal Creek mine in Campbell County, Wyo.

Located near the nexus of ERCOT’s Houston, North and South hubs, the plant had been for sale since mid-2017. This year through July 1, day-ahead on-peak locational marginal prices at those three locations have averaged less than $28/MWh.

More ($): Texas municipal to retire mothballed coal plant

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