FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) today reinforced its ongoing commitment to providing safe, reliable and affordable energy while reducing its environmental footprint by asking Indiana regulators to approve additional emission controls for its Rockport generation plant.
I&M, an operating unit of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), submitted plans to add selective catalytic reduction (SCR) emission controls on Unit 2 of its Rockport Plant in a filing with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission. The IURC previously approved I&M’s plans to install SCR emission controls on Unit 1 at Rockport.
Selective Catalytic Reduction has been used for decades as a proven and effective method of reducing nitrogen oxide emissions.
“I&M constantly works to reduce our environmental impact while generating and delivering reliable, affordable power to our customers,” said Paul Chodak III, I&M President and Chief Operating Officer. “In the past year, we have built three solar power plants, and a fourth will come online before the end of 2016. We are proud to say about 60 percent of our generation is already emission-free, and our long-term plans include adding more renewable generation.
“Adding new, advanced emission control equipment at Rockport will further cut emissions from our lone coal-fueled power plant in Indiana while maintaining the low-cost, reliable supply of electricity it produces to support the local economies.”
I&M plans to install the SCR technology by the end of 2019, as set forth in a modified consent decree reached with the U.S. EPA, several northeastern states and a number of other organizations that agreed with the decree. Those organizations include the Sierra Club, Citizens Action Coalition of Indiana, Hoosier Environmental Council, Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, Indiana Wildlife Federation and the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The Rockport Plant has more than 230 employees and is one of the top 10 employers in Spencer County, according to the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. Each of the two Rockport units is capable of generating up to 1,300 megawatts of electricity.
SCR – which operates in a similar fashion to a motor vehicle’s catalytic converter – is just the latest emission-fighting method I&M employs at its Rockport plant. Others include:
- Low NOx burners that already reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides.
- Dry sorbent injection technology to reduce emissions of sulfur dioxide.
- Activated carbon injection technology that reduces mercury emissions by 90 percent.
I&M also has reduced its overall environmental impact in other ways, including:
- Increased use of renewable resources, including solar generation plants and 450 megawatts of wind power – enough to power more than 100,000 homes.
- Long-term plans to significantly expand renewables, adding wind and solar generation sufficient to power more than 400,000 homes by 2035.
- Robust energy efficiency programs that enable customers to reduce their energy use and reduce overall demand for energy.
- Investments to ensure a long lifespan for its emissions-free hydroelectric generation and the Cook Nuclear Plant, which generates enough energy to power more than one million homes.
Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) is headquartered in Fort Wayne, and its 2,450 employees serve more than 589,000 customers. It operates 2,600 MW of coal-fired generation in Indiana, 2,160 MW of nuclear generation in Michigan and 22 MW of hydro generation in both states. The company’s generation portfolio also includes 450 MW of purchased wind generation and, by the end of 2016, approximately 15 MW of large-scale solar generation.
American Electric Power is one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, delivering electricity to nearly 5.4 million customers through 223,000 miles of distribution lines in 11 states. AEP owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, a more than 40,000-mile network that includes more 765-kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined. AEP also ranks among the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning approximately 32,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the U.S. 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). AEP’s headquarters are in Columbus, Ohio.