6 Electric Plant Projects in Ohio, $4.68B to Be Invested

WELLSVILLE, Ohio — The announcement Thursday that South Field Energy LLC, plans to build a $1.1 billion, 1,100-megawatt natural gas electric generating plant in Columbiana County brings to six the number of similar plants slated for Ohio, adding up to a collective investment of $4.86 billion.

The South Field Energy plant is Boston-based Advanced Power Services second project in northeastern Ohio. It will generate electricity for the delivery and sale to the interstate transmission grid.

Similar to the company’s $900 million, 700 megawatt energy plant under construction near Carrollton in Carroll County, the project here is expected to create up to 550 construction jobs over three years. Once operating, the plant will have 25 full-time employees in engineering, technical, operation, management and administrative positions, the company said.

The plant will be built in Yellow Creek Township, about 3 miles from Wellsville, on a 150-acre parcel set back 3,500 feet from Route 45. It will produce 1,100 megawatts, enough to power more than 1 million households and will use General Electric turbine technology.

It is the sixth natural gas power plant project announced for Ohio, which collectively total $4.86 billion in investment and 5,338 megawatts, according to the advocacy group Energy in Depth. In addition to Clean Energy Future’s $800 million, 800 megawatts natural-gas fired plant to be built in Lordstown, other projects are underway in Middletown, Oregon and Wilkesville, Ohio.

“Ohioans face a growing gap in energy production,” said Jonathan Winslow, senior vice president for development at Advanced Power, in announcing the Columbiana County project. “With facilities like this, we can begin to close that gap by using advanced technology to produce substantial, reliable power, while also minimizing our environmental footprint.”

Advanced Power is in the process of completing environmental studies and will seek the necessary permits for the South Field Energy project. The company plans to seek an enterprise zone tax abatement agreement as well, Winslow said. Bechtel, which is constructing the Carroll County Energy project, will serve as general contractor.

Mike Halleck, president of the Columbiana County Board of Commissioners, called the project “just another example of how the oil and gas industry continues to improve our county. Not only will it bring a boost to our economy through jobs and tax revenues, it will also directly support our local schools.”

The plant’s combined cycle design will produce electricity efficiently, capturing heat to generate additional electricity in the steam turbine. In addition to natural gas, the plant may also use ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel during periods when natural gas is not available. It will use efficient cooling technology to minimize water consumption and wastewater discharge, the company said.

A pre-application notification letter to the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, dated Oct. 5, states a public informational meeting will be held at  6 p.m. Oct. 20 at Wellsville High School.

The letter, from a Columbus attorney representing South Field Energy, says the company anticipates it will seek the waiver of two rules regarding construction of the electric generating facility.

The first request would waive an extensive site selection study. “The applicant will provide discussion of its site selection process and the key attributes met by selecting the site,” writes attorney Michael J. Settineri.

“The facility has a footprint of approximately 20 acres and will be located within 150 acres of privately owned land, which is adjacent to a roughly 20-acre site available for construction staging and laydown,” he states.

The second waiver deals with filing PJM system impact studies along with the application, the letter states. PJM is the electrical power grid.

Pictured: Rendering of South Field Energy’s power plant it plans to build in Wellsville.

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.