Arizona Public Service (APS) has purchased Southern California Edison’s ownership in Units 4 and 5 of the Four Corners Power Plant near Farmington, N.M. for $182 million.
As part of its plan, announced in November 2010, APS has permanently closed the plant’s older Units 1, 2 and 3, and will install additional emission controls on the remaining cleaner, more efficient units.
With the closing of the APS-owned Units 1, 2 and 3, capacity at Four Corners is reduced from 2,100-MW to 1,540-MW, enabling the plant to serve half a million homes. Buying SCE’s 48 percent interest in the larger Units 4 and 5 will increase APS’s total Four Corners capacity from 791-MW to 970-MW. APS now owns 63 percent of Units 4 and 5.
On Monday afternoon, Units 1, 2 and 3, which helped ensure a reliable supply of energy for APS customers since 1963 (Units 1 and 2) and 1964 (Unit 3), were permanently shut down in a ceremony for plant employees. Closure of the three older units by January 1, 2014, and the installation of selective catalytic reduction equipment on Units 4 and 5 by July 31, 2018, will satisfy Best Available Retrofit Technology (BART) requirements for the plant issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in August 2012.
Decommissioning work, including complete dismantling and removal of the older units and any associated structures, will begin immediately and is expected to last about three years. Employees with responsibilities operating and maintaining Units 1, 2 and 3 now will focus on decommissioning activities.