SWEPCO Announces Hempstead County as site for New Baseload Generation Power Plant

American Electric Power’s (NYSE: AEP) Southwestern Electric Power Company (SWEPCO) announced August 9 the proposed site selection for a new baseload power plant designed to meet the long-term generation demands of the company’s customers. The new coal-fueled plant should be operational by the summer of 2011 at a 2,800-acre location north of Fulton, Ark. in Hempstead County, about 15 miles northeast of Texarkana, Ark. The proposed 600 megawatt plant will create between 1,000-1,400 construction jobs and bring an estimated 110 permanent jobs to the area.

“This announcement brings much needed generation to the Ark-La-Tex and, along with it, upgrades to the transmission system that will vastly improve the ability to move power in this region,” said Michael G. Morris, AEP chairman, president and chief executive officer. “The baseload plant is a significant part of $1.4 billion of planned investments in new generating resources for SWEPCO announced previously this summer.” Other company investments include gas-fired generation in Tontitown, Arkansas and Shreveport, Louisiana.

The Hempstead plant will use an advanced clean coal combustion technology called “ultra-supercritical,” making it one of the first plants of its type to go into operation in the U.S. Ultra-supercritical generation is a new, efficient, pulverized coal technology requiring less coal and creating fewer emissions to produce the same amount of power as existing plants using Powder River Basin (Wyoming) coal.

The cost of the Hempstead county plant is approximately $1.3 billion, of which SWEPCO’s investment will be about 75 percent, and annual payroll is projected to be $12 million.

“SWEPCO believes a coal-fueled plant is the best choice for new baseload generation to fuel the future growth of the economies in our region, allow us to remain a low-cost provider, and prevent over-reliance on natural gas for electricity generation,” said Nick Akins, president and chief operating officer of SWEPCO. “The plant is expected to boost regional economic development efforts in Southwest Arkansas as well as Northeast Texas along the I-30 corridor.”

One other potential site was considered for the new coal plant: the company’s lignite-fired Henry W. Pirkey Power Plant near Hallsville, Texas.

“We evaluated both of these locations based on a number of factors, including the impact on the environment, available transmission, adaptation to generating technologies, and accommodation of unit size, before choosing the Hempstead County location,” Akins said.

Construction will begin once necessary regulatory approvals are obtained. Filings will be made in SWEPCO’s three-state service area of Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas. SWEPCO has an option to purchase the land where the plant will be built.

“AEP is a strong supporter of Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) clean-coal technology for new power generation as demonstrated by AEP operating company plans to build IGCC plants in two of its eastern states. However, the coal used in our SWEPCO region requires different IGCC technology than the GE technology that will be used for AEP’s eastern IGCC plants and we do not have the kind of performance guarantees from the technology provider that would allow us to pursue IGCC technology for this facility,” Akins said. “As such, ultra-supercritical coal generation, with its excellent lower emissions performance, is the best option.” SWEPCO’s fuel mix is expected to remain at 85 percent solid fuel and 15 percent natural gas once all three construction projects are completed, maintaining the company’s favorable fuel costs.

SWEPCO’s new generation plans are the result of a Request for Proposals (RFP) competitive bidding process initiated in December 2005. An Independent Monitor (IM) oversees the process, outlined by the Louisiana Public Service Commission’s Market-Based Mechanism Order, requiring Louisiana utilities to implement competitive procurement processes to acquire or construct incremental generation capacity. The IM actively solicited bids from all potential suppliers, including SWEPCO.

SWEPCO serves 454,000 customers in three states: 112,000 in western Arkansas, 174,000 in Northwest Louisiana, and 168,000 in East Texas. Major cities served in Arkansas are Fayetteville, Texarkana, Springdale and Rogers. The cities of Hope and Bentonville are wholesale customers. News releases and other information about SWEPCO can be found on the World Wide Web at http://swepco.com.

American Electric Power is one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, delivering electricity to more than 5 million customers in 11 states. AEP ranks among the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning nearly 36,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the U.S. AEP also owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, a nearly 39,000-mile network that includes more 765 kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined. AEP’s utility units operate as AEP Ohio, AEP Texas, Appalachian Power (in Virginia and West Virginia), AEP Appalachian Power (in Tennessee), Indiana Michigan Power, Kentucky Power, Public Service Company of Oklahoma, and Southwestern Electric Power Company (in Arkansas, Louisiana and east Texas). American Electric Power, based in Columbus, Ohio, is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2006.

Scott McCloud

Corporate Communications


24/7 Dpt. Pager: 1-866-223-0632

More From I&M

Mobile App Learn more

The Power is in Your Hands

Find Out How Save Money & Energy

Save Money & Energy

Sign Up Now Pay Online for Free with Paperless Billing

Pay Online for Free with Paperless Billing

Learn More Understanding Your Residential Bill

Understanding Your Residential Bill

Select your state:

Visit AEP.com
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of the AEP Terms and Conditions. View our Privacy Policy. © 1996-2020 American Electric Power. All Rights Reserved.

Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy for Indiana Michigan Power (I&M), a unit of American Electric Power (AEP)


This Privacy Policy applies only to IndianaMichiganPower.com and the Indiana Michigan Power customer mobile app (com.aep.customerapp.im). Other AEP websites and apps may be governed by their own privacy policies, appropriate to the uses and needs of each. Throughout the site or app, we may provide links to resources and sites that are not part of IndianaMichiganPower.com or the Indiana Michigan Power customer mobile app. This Privacy Policy does not apply to those resources and sites.


By using this site or app, you consent to the terms of this Privacy Policy. Whenever you submit information via this site or app, you agree to the collection, use, and disclosure of that information in accordance with this Privacy Policy.

Information Collected

  1. Passively collected information

    During your use of this site or app, we may collect anonymous information about your visit here through the use of server logs, cookies, scripts, tracking pixels and other Web traffic tracking systems. This information is aggregated and used to improve user experience through analysis of user activities. This information is never combined with any of the personally identifiable information you may provide in your use of the features of this site or app.
  2. Personally identifiable information

    On certain forms of this site or app, you may be asked to provide information about yourself or your account with us, either to identify yourself to us or to request a service from us. In each case, we will inform you what information is provided at your option and what information is required to complete the transaction or activity you are engaged in. If you are unwilling to provide this required information, you will be unable to complete the requested transaction.

Use and disclosure of information

The information you provide to us will be used to respond to requests you may make for services. Some or all of this information may be added to your permanent account record and may be used for research purposes.

In addition, we may use elements of this information in the following situations:

  1. We may transfer the information to I&M’s affiliates and subsidiaries, unless such transfer is prohibited by law;
  2. We may transfer the information as part of a merger, consolidation, acquisition, divestiture or other corporate restructuring (including bankruptcy);
  3. We may make the information available to third parties who are providing the product, service or information that you have requested (but not your password);
  4. We may make such information available to third parties who are providing services to I&M (for example, providing the information to third parties performing computer-related services for I&M);
  5. We may use the information to communicate with you about products and services that may be of interest to you.
  6. We may disclose the information if we form a good-faith belief that disclosure of such information is necessary to investigate, prevent, or take action regarding any illegal activities or regarding interference with the operation of our site or violation of its terms of use; or
  7. We may disclose the information if we believe that disclosure is required by law or regulation or in response to a subpoena or other order of a court or other governmental agency.

I&M uses Flurry Analytics Service (provided by Yahoo) in order to improve its mobile apps. Flurry’s privacy policy governs the use of this information.

Also, I&M reserves the right to share any aggregated information (i.e., non-personally identifiable information) with any third parties for any reason, unless prohibited by law.

We will not sell, rent or otherwise disclose the information we gather about you or your account to any third party, except as outlined in this Privacy Policy.


I&M takes reasonable steps to protect your personally identifiable information as it is transferred to us, through the use of Web technologies such as the Secure Sockets Layer and others. However, no Internet transmission of information is ever completely secure or error-free. In particular, e-mail sent to or from I&M may not be secure.

How to Reach Us

If you would like to update your personally identifiable information or if you have questions about this privacy policy, please contact us.

Changes to This Policy

I&M reserves the right to change this Privacy Policy at any time. If this Privacy Policy changes, the revised policy will be posted to this site. Please review this Privacy Policy before you provide any personally identifiable information through this site. Use of our web site after the posting of a revised privacy policy constitutes your consent to the revised policy.

This policy was last revised on December 13, 2017.

Close ×

Sign Up For Alerts

Subscribing to I&M alerts gives you instant notification for:

  • Billing & Payments - avoid late payments and disconnection
  • Outage Updates - find out if there's an outage at your address and when power will be back on

Win an Xbox One with Alerts!

Enroll in alerts to be eligible to win. Subscribing to I&M alerts gives you instant notification for:

  • Billing & Payments - avoid late payments and disconnection
  • Outage Updates - find out if there's an outage at your address and when power will be back on

Loading video...