Station coal-fired units could be permanently decommissioned and retired
from service in less than two years.
But under an
Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) which the Northern Indiana Public Service
Company filed today with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC),
the Bailly Generating Station will be retired.
The IRP in which
NIPSCO formalizes its plans to retire the Bailly Generating Station involved
“several months of analysis, public meetings, and input from customers,
consumer representatives, environmental organizations, and other
stakeholders,” NIPSCO said in a statement released today.
“Customer needs and
the energy industry continue to evolve, and it’s vital that we plan for
tomorrow, today,” said NIPSCO president Violet Sistovaris. “We’ve identified
a preferred path that provides customer and environmental benefits,
reflective of our goal to focus on providing affordable, clean energy while
maintaining flexibility for future technology and market changes.”
“NIPSCO analyzed a
range of options for its existing electric generating fleet, while
evaluating the unique impacts on customer costs, environmental compliance,
communities, and workforce needs,” the company said. “Based on a combination
of those factors, the results led to a plan that will include the retirement
of four of the company’s seven coal-fired electric generating units at two
different power plants over the next seven years.”
NIPSCO plans to retire Bailly Generating Station’s coal-fired units “as soon
as mid-2018”; and two of the R.M. Schahfer Generating Station’s coal-fired
units by the end of 2023.
Those units account
for roughly 50 percent of the power which NIPSCO currently produces from
coal, the company said.
employees work at the Bailly Generating Station, and NIPSCO’s “goal is to
provide ongoing work opportunities for existing employees by proactively
working with union leadership and affected employees,” Sistovaris said.
its decision to retire the Bailly and Schahfer coal-fired units to “an aging
fleet, low market prices for natural gas, and new environmental regulations
that would require significant investments, beyond what NIPSCO recently
invested.” Under the IRP, “some of these incremental costs will be avoided,
providing long-term benefits to customers.”
NIPSCO did say
that, in the short term, the company “will rely primarily on existing
resources through 2019,” although “there may be a window of time when
purchased power is needed during the transition.”
“For those units
where environmental upgrades are needed to comply with newly added
environmental regulations, NIPSCO will be moving forward with required
environmental compliance filings consistent with the results indicated in
the IRP,” the company added.
continue to assess the plan for long-term generation; the plan will be
further revisited and refined in the next IRP,” the company said. “In the
meantime, NIPSCO will begin work to identify affordable replacement options.
Based on current findings in the IRP, NIPSCO expects that a combined-cycle
gas turbine (CCGT) is a likely candidate, but this option is subject to
change, based on key market, compliance and technology developments.”
NIPSCO noted that
its portfolio for electric supply has already shifted in the last decade to
include less coal-fired generation. In 2010, NIPSCO’s energy supply mix
included about 90 percent coal-fired generation, while today, that mix is
only 72 percent coal fired. “NIPSCO has also invested more than $800 million
in new environmental technologies for certain coal-fired units--nearly all
of which was directed toward those units expected to continue operating--to
improve air quality in compliance with federal regulations.”
information about NIPSCO’s energy plan and the IRP process, visit NIPSCO.com/IRP