Homer City Generating Station

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Homer City Generating Station
HCGeneratingTowers.JPG
Homer City Generating Station is located in Pennsylvania
Location of Homer City Generating Station
CountryUnited States
LocationCenter Township, Indiana County, Pennsylvania
Coordinates40°30′39″N 79°11′37″W / 40.51083°N 79.19361°W / 40.51083; -79.19361Coordinates: 40°30′39″N 79°11′37″W / 40.51083°N 79.19361°W / 40.51083; -79.19361
StatusActive
Commission dateUnits 1, 2: 1969; Unit 3 1977
Owner(s)General Electric
Power station
Primary fuelBituminous coal
Generation unitsSteam turbine
Power generation
Maximum capacity2,022 MWe
 
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Homer City Generating Station
HCGeneratingTowers.JPG
Homer City Generating Station is located in Pennsylvania
Location of Homer City Generating Station
CountryUnited States
LocationCenter Township, Indiana County, Pennsylvania
Coordinates40°30′39″N 79°11′37″W / 40.51083°N 79.19361°W / 40.51083; -79.19361Coordinates: 40°30′39″N 79°11′37″W / 40.51083°N 79.19361°W / 40.51083; -79.19361
StatusActive
Commission dateUnits 1, 2: 1969; Unit 3 1977
Owner(s)General Electric
Power station
Primary fuelBituminous coal
Generation unitsSteam turbine
Power generation
Maximum capacity2,022 MWe

Homer City Generating Station is a 2-GW coal-burning power station near Homer City, in Indiana County, Pennsylvania, USA. It is owned by General Electric and operated by NRG. Units 1 and 2, rated at 660 MWe, were launched into operation in 1969. Unit 3, rated at 692 MWe nameplate capacity, was launched in 1977.[1] It employs about 260 people, and generates enough electricity to supply two million households.[2]

Contents

Location[edit]

The station is located in Center Township, Indiana County, Pennsylvania, occupying approximately 2,400 acres (9.7 km2). The site also includes the 1,800-acre (7.3 km2) Two Lick Reservoir, a water conservation facility which is operated by the station.[2]

Coal supply[edit]

As of 2005, bituminous coal was delivered to the Homer City Generating Station by truck. Units 1 and 2 burned local Pennsylvania coal (that is cleaned on site in a coal cleaning plant) or Western Pennsylvania Pittsburgh seam coal. A flue-gas desulfurization unit (scrubber) was added to Unit 3 which allows the unit to burn local coal.[2] But now with diminishing local coal and mines to support it, they have reopened the train track that runs through Indiana University of Pennsylvania and now supplies are brought in by train.[citation needed]

History[edit]

Until its construction in the 1960s by the Pennsylvania Electric Co. (PenElec) and others, much of the property was owned by the Benamati family. In 1969, generating units #1 and #2 began operation, while unit #3 began operating in 1977.[2]

In 2001, affiliates of the General Electric bought the plant in 2001 from Edison, and leased it back to Edison. In 2011, Edison International failed to secure financing to add pollution-control devices and announced plans to transfer full control of the plant to General Electric. On February 29, 2012, Edison took a $1 billion impairment charge related to the Homer City plant and several other coal-fired power plants. At the end of 2012 full control of the plant was transferred back to General Electric who hired NRG to operate the plant.[3]

Water use[edit]

Boiler water make up, condenser cooling water, and potable water is taken from Two Lick Creek, processed through various pretreatment facilities, used and discharged through various environmental treatment facilities, and returned to Two Lick Creek and Blacklick Creek. From there, the Black Lick enters the Conemaugh River, which goes on to meet the Loyalhanna River, creating the Kiskiminetas River, before entering the Allegheny River.[2]

Cooling Towers of the Homer City Generating Station

Pollution[edit]

A scrubber was added in 1998 which reduced mercury output.

Sulfur dioxide (SO2) pollution[edit]

Selenium in wastewater discharges[edit]

In 2007, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) fined the owners of the Homer City electricity generating station, EME Homer City Generation LP, $200,000 for violating the Pennsylvania Clean Streams Law. The station exceeded its permitted effluent standards for selenium, total suspended solids, and biochemical oxygen demand in its wastewater discharges, and allowed discharges of stormwater associated with its flue-gas desulfurization scrubbers.[4][dead link]

Architectural mention[edit]

View of the power plant from Homer-Center High School

The plant's Unit 3 has a 371 m (1,217 ft) tall chimney, which was built in 1977. This chimney is currently the third tallest chimney in the world, the second tallest in North America, and the tallest in the United States. On clear days, it is possible to spot the chimney from as far south as Greensburg, Pennsylvania and as far east as Ebensburg, Pennsylvania. The chimney is no longer in use, as the gas flow from Unit 3 has been bypassed through a newer flue gas treatment system installed in 2002.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Existing Electric Generating Units in the United States, 2006" (Excel). Energy Information Administration, U.S. Department of Energy. 2006. Retrieved 2008-07-14. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Homer City Generating Station" (PDF). Edison International. 2005. Retrieved 2008-08-02. 
  3. ^ "Town Hopes to Keep Tower of Coal Power". The Wall Street Journal. News Corp. 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-14. 
  4. ^ "DEP fines Homer City generating station $200,000 for selenium discharges". Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. July 13, 2007. Retrieved 2008-08-02. 

External links[edit]