The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has issued a series of permits for Birdsboro Power LLC to begin construction of a 450 MW natural gas-fired power plant in the southeastern part of the state. A pipeline that would serve the facility also finally received federal approval on Thursday.
The DEP issued permits earlier this month covering construction of the plant, an electric transmission line to deliver generated power and a water pipeline. Late last month, the agency also issued the water quality certification (WQC) for a 13-mile DTE Midstream Appalachia LLC pipeline that would supply the plant in Berks County.
DTE is to build a 12-inch diameter pipeline with a capacity of 79,000 Dth/d. It would have one receipt point at an interconnect with Texas Eastern Transmission LP. The company began the pre-filing process in late 2016 and filed for a FERC certificate in May 2017.
Last month, DTE requested FERC issue a certificate as soon as possible to meet Birdsboro’s in-service date of June 30. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission granted the pipeline a certificate of public convenience and necessity at its meeting on Thursday without discussion.
The order appeared to come in time, asDTE noted in its request that tree clearing would need to begin before March 31 to meet prescribed deadlines in the pipeline’s environmental assessment.
DEP finished public hearing and comment periods last year for the plant, which would be built on the site of a former steel foundry. The plant is one of dozens that have been proposed or are under construction in the Appalachian Basin to take advantage of low cost natural gas. Birdsboro received its air quality permit about two years ago.