Photo by Diane Cox
The 465-megawatt Dynegy plant on Illinois 143 in East Alton near the Wood River Creek includes two coal-fueled units that began operating in 1954 and 1964. The plant employs 90 workers and generates $1.5 million per year in tax revenue for local governments.
EAST ALTON – The Dynegy power plant has been given a temporary reprieve from a scheduled June 1 closure.
In an emailed statement, Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) spokesman Andy Schonert said the plant may be kept online to ensure power-generating reliability. MISO is the regional power grid operator in Ameren's service territory and 14 other states.
Schonert said a public stakeholder meeting will be convened in approximately 30 days to discuss alternative solutions.
“We are currently exploring some of the possible options,” he said.
The 465-megawatt plant on Illinois 143 in East Alton near the Wood River Creek includes two coal-fueled units that began operating in 1954 and 1964. The plant employs 90 workers and generates $1.5 million per year in tax revenue for local governments.
Dynegy stated the closure is necessary because a poorly designed wholesale capacity market in Central and Southern Illinois does not allow competitive generators to recover costs. The company states the current market design of the MISO capacity auction is flawed because it allows regulated utilities from surrounding states to bid their capacity into the auction at little or no cost. These regulated utilities receive higher guaranteed compensation from their respective state-regulated markets.
“Illinois is surrounded by 14 states that are regulated and therefore can be compensated for a lot of their generative costs by their state,” Dynegy spokesperson Micah Hirschfield said. “We are committed to work with MISO to regulate the market. We’re having a lot of discussions with MISO on many topics. Dynegy cannot financially survive in a market where they are not refunded their costs by the state while surrounding companies that are can underbid.”