FirstEnergy sells part of former Hatfield power plant to gas developer

FirstEnergy Corp. has agreed to sell of a portion of its former Hatfield's Ferry Power Station in Greene County to a New Jersey-based power developer that wants to build a large natural gas-fired plant on the site.

APV Renaissance Partners, a subsidiary of American Power Ventures, has started engineering studies and gathering permits for the construction of a 1,000-megawatt natural gas facility on 33 acres at the former coal-fired power plant, Akron, Ohio-based FirstEnergy said Wednesday.

The sale is expected to close in the third quarter of 2018.

If the project goes forward, APV would acquire the project site, including the plant’s two cooling towers, for about $40 million. FirstEnergy, under its power plant subsidiary Allegheny Energy Supply, would still own the remaining Hatfield plant facilities, including about 200 acres of land and other former Hatfield structures.

“FirstEnergy supports new development opportunities at our former plant sites,” said James H. Lash, executive vice president and president of FirstEnergy Generation, in a press release.

“The project at Hatfield has the potential to bring jobs and economic growth to Greene County by capitalizing on a strategic location and existing infrastructure.”

FirstEnergy shuttered the plant in 2013, blaming the costs of running the plant and meeting more stringent environmental regulations.

Hatfield’s Ferry, an expansive 1,710-megawatt landmark on the Monongahela River, had burned coal to produce electricity since 1969 until its closure in 2013. That closing affected about 170 employees.

APV publicly expressed interest in re-developing part of the plant last month.

In January, a developer filed an application with the regional power grid operator, Valley Forge-based PJM Interconnection, to connect 1,140 megawatts of natural gas-powered generation on the transmission line that once served the coal plant. That application date listed the projected operating date for the project as the second quarter of 2022.

“APV is excited to undertake a project to support the reliability of the region's electricity supply, redevelop an existing industrial site and contribute to economic growth in southwestern Pennsylvania,” said John Seker, president of APV.

“The existing infrastructure available at Hatfield's Ferry and abundant fuel supply in the region make this an ideal location for the construction of a natural gas power plant.”

Daniel Moore:, 412-263-2743 and Twitter @PGdanielmoore.

First Published April 5, 2017 11:35 AM

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