Black & Veatch is to design and provide engineering support for a new coal fired plant, to be one of the largest utility-owned coal plants in the USA. It will be a 500 MW supercritical ‘clean coal’ unit for Wisconsin Public Service Corporation’s Weston unit 4 plant and is due to come on line in 2008.
Black & Veatch is performing ‘conceptual and definition engineering, permitting support, detailed engineering and procurement assistance’ on the project.
Ageing plants and demand from WPSC’s half million customers , which is increasing by 2-3 per cent per year, are given as the reasons for the new build; and WPSC is following the trend of utilities who are again considering coal generation.
WPSC selected coal in part to avoid the significant fluctuations in the price of natural gas in recent years. The plant will also feature supercritical technology, which offers higher efficiency and utilises the latest emission control technology, lowering operating costs and providing cleaner air.
‘The design of the new plant will allow it to meet or exceed all environmental regulations’ said Tom Meinz, senior vp at WPSC.