Michigan Coal Plant(s) Off the Table
Consumers Energy has canceled the $2.3 billion 830 MW supercritical coal-fired power plant for which it had successfully obtained an air permit in late 2009. The recession and slow economic recovery which have reduced customer demand, a surplus in Midwest generating capacity, and low natural gas prices, were all given as reasons for the decision. The company will also suspend operations of seven smaller coal-fired units on January 1, 2015; two at Karn Weadock, three at J.R. Whiting, and two at B.C. Cobb generating plants. Environmental upgrades at its five remaining coal-fired units are estimated to cost $1.6 billion. The shutdowns and upgrades together will reduce the company’s overall air emissions by 90 percent. Meanwhile, Consumers Energy’s 100 MW wind farm is now under construction in Mason County and will be ready in late 2012, and its 150 MW wind farm in Tuscola County will commence operations in late 2015.