Entergy Louisiana, sister company to Entergy Arkansas, announced on Wednesday (March 29) that it has completed its $870 million St. Charles Power Station ahead of schedule and on budget.
Company officials said the 980-megawatt power station in Montz, La., is one of the cleanest natural gas-powered plants in Entergy Louisiana’s fleet, emitting about 40% less carbon dioxide on average than Entergy’s older natural gas-powered units.
“The St. Charles Power Station will supply reliable, clean energy to customers to help support the tremendous growth Louisiana is experiencing,” said Phillip May, president and CEO of Entergy Louisiana. “This combined-cycle plant is one part of our transformation to cleaner, more efficient generation. Replacing older, less efficient plants with new, cleaner natural gas units will improve system reliability, reduce environmental impacts and produce substantial customer savings over the long term.”
Because of the plant’s high efficiency, the natural gas-fired plant is projected that customers will save more than $1.3 billion over the anticipated 30-year life of the unit. Customer savings are expected to exceed the plant’s construction cost in less than 10 years. The company plans to officially dedicate the 31-worker power plant on July 15.
Company officials said the St. Charles Power Station is another important milestone in Entergy Corporation’s broader plan to modernize and transform the Entergy Utility’s existing generation fleet. In addition to providing reliable, cost-effective power, Entergy’s investments in its generation portfolio transformation and nuclear improvements since 2000 have resulted in substantial reductions in the company’s dirty air emissions.
The approximately $870 million St. Charles Power Station project is one of six major generation projects totaling approximately $3.5 billion to be undertaken across Entergy’s service area over the next three years. In late April, Entergy announced an ambitious new climate change strategy to lower the company’s carbon footprint by 50% by 2030 and assume a leadership role in the development of cleaner fuel choice.
The New Orleans-based utility giant’s stance follows Entergy’s Arkansas pact with several state environmental groups to shut down its coal-fired utility fleet in Arkansas, where the company serves 700,000 customers in 63 of the state’s 75 counties.