SWEPCO receives approval for 600 MW coal-fired plant

25 March 2008 — The Louisiana Public Service Commission has approved a request by Southwestern Electric Power Co., a unit of American Electric Power, to build a 600 MW coal-fired power plant in southwest Arkansas for around $2,230/kW.

Estimated cost of the plant is around $1.34 billion with SWEPCO investing 73 percent of the total. SWEPCO will own 440 MW of the plant’s capacity. Construction will take approximately 48 months, with an expected commercial operation date in late summer 2012.

The plant will use ultra-supercritical advanced coal combustion technology. The plant will use low-sulfur coal and will include state-of-the-art emission control technologies, including a design that allows for the retrofit of carbon dioxide controls.

SWEPCO has received approvals from two of the three states it serves, with the Louisiana decision following the Arkansas Public Service Commission’s approval of the plant. A request is pending before the Public Utility Commission of Texas.

As part of the Louisiana approval, SWEPCO will prepare and submit a study identifying the potential for implementing cost-effective energy efficiency and load management programs for the company’s Louisiana customers. Also, SWEPCO will work with an independent monitor to track construction of the proposed plant for the LPSC.

SWEPCO is awaiting an air permit from the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality before construction of the power generation facilities can begin. A permit could be issued by this summer, the company said.