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Natural Gas-Fired Power Plant Comes Online in Former Utica Shale Stronghold

A subsidiary of Switzerland-based Advanced Power AG said Wednesday that commercial operations have started at a 700 MW natural gas-fired power plant in eastern Ohio.

Located about 60 miles south of Youngstown in Carrollton, the seat of what was an early stronghold for Utica Shale development in Carroll County, the facility was one of the first announced in the state and region to take advantage of low-cost natural gas supplies. While producers remain active in Carroll County, development has generally shifted to the southeast part of the state.

Advanced announced the project in 2013 and later secured $899 million in project financing for the plant, which sits on a 70-plus acre lot.

Served by an American Electric Power Co. 345 kV transmission line and the Tennessee Gas Pipeline system, the power plant sells into the PJM Interconnection market and went into service last month. The Carroll County Energy plant, as it’s called, is owned by a consortium of equity investors that include Advanced Power, TIAA-CREF, Chubu Electric Power Co., Ullico and Prudential.

Advanced is also developing Southfield Energy to the north of the Carrollton facility in Columbiana County, OH. That plant would also be fired by natural gas and produce 1,100 MW of electricity. In New York’s Dutchess County, Advanced is also constructing the 1,100 MW Cricket Valley Energy Center.

Dozens of natural gas-fired facilities have been announced or are under construction across Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Advanced’s announcement came after another over the summer from Boston-based Clean Energy Future LLC, which brought online the 870 MW Oregon Clean Energy Center in northwest Ohio in July. Development for that facility also started in 2013 when Clean Energy filed an application with state regulators.

That facility is now owned by Ares Management LP affiliates and I Squared Capital. 

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