AEP’s 580 MW Dresden natural gas-fired power plant begins commercial operation

Source: American Electrical Power

American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) has begun commercial operation of the Dresden natural gas-fired power plant, a nominal 580-megawatt combined-cycle generating unit. The plant, located near Dresden, Ohio, provides 25 permanent jobs and employed 300 workers at the peak of construction. 

With the start-up of the Dresden plant, AEP has added more than 4,800 megawatts of natural gas-fired capacity to its generating fleet in the past decade. Natural gas accounts for 24 percent of AEP's total generating capacity. 

"This is another step in the transformation of AEP's generating fleet as we continue to diversify our fuel mix to improve our environmental footprint and provide economical electricity for our customers," said Nicholas K. Akins, AEP's president and chief executive officer. "Natural gas will become an increasing part of AEP's generating portfolio in the coming decades as a result of the development of shale gas reserves and new environmental regulations, but we continue to believe our company and our nation need a diverse electricity generating portfolio that also includes investment in cleaner coal technologies, nuclear and renewable power.

AEP purchased the partially constructed Dresden plant in 2007 for approximately $85 million from Dresden Energy LLC, a subsidiary of Dominion. AEP accelerated construction of Dresden in January 2011. Total costs for the plant were approximately $366 million. 

The Dresden plant will supply electricity to AEP's Appalachian Power customers in West Virginia, Virginia and Tennessee.

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