NRG TELLS ERCOT IT PLANS TO MOTHBALL A UNIT AT ITS WA PARISH POWER PLANT
NRG Energy has told the Electric Reliability Council of Texas it plans to mothball a 75 MW natural gas peaker at its 3,675 MW WA Parish power plant located southwest of Houston.
In a suspension-of-operations notice filed Friday with ERCOT, NRG said it is seeking to mothball the unit starting May 19 “for a period not less than three months and not more than six months.”
“As part of the carbon-capture system at the WA Parish plant, we knew we would need to build a cogen unit to provide steam and electricity,” said NRG spokesman David Knox. “Based on the need for power in Texas, we built the combustion turbine generator as a stand-alone unit early and brought it online in 2012.”
That stand-alone unit is referred to as Petra Nova, a 50:50 joint venture between NRG and JX Nippon Oil & Gas Exploration to develop a commercial-scale, post-combustion, carbon-capture project at NRG’s WA Parish generating station, NRG said. The project is designed to capture 90% of carbon dioxide from a 240 MW slipstream of flue gas and use or sequester 1.6 million st/year of this greenhouse gas annually. The project facility is expected to be operational in 2016, according to NRG’s website.
“As has always been the plan, we are now nearing completion of the carbon-capture system and are now converting the unit from a simple-cycle combustion turbine to a cogen unit by adding a heat-recovery steam generator to the turbine and accompanying systems and piping,” Knox said. “The unit will be offline for six to eight months and the carbon-capture system will be online at the end of the year.”
Petra Nova will take the flue gas off the roughly 600 MW coal-fired WA Parish Unit 8, Knox said. Unit 8 burned 2.3 million st and 110 MMcf in 2015 through November, and 2.7 million st and 84 MMcf throughout 2014, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration.