The decades-old generating units at Greenwood Utilities Henderson Station be retired effective May 31, 2018.
“At this point in time, what we are getting in payments from Municipal Energy Agency of Mississippi (MEAM), who provides our power, is no longer covering our costs of operating that plant,” said Tony Sinclair, CEO and president of Greenwood Utilities.
MEAM purchased 100 percent of capacity and energy produced from Henderson Station, located on the River Road extension. The company decided that operating the Henderson Station units was no longer “economically viable,” Sinclair said in a press release.
According to the release, last year the Henderson Station only produced 3.2 percent of the total energy produced in kilowatt hours that Greenwood Utilities purchased from MEAM.
The capacity prices in the electricity marketplace are lower than what it costs to run the generators at the Henderson Station, Sinclair said.
After Greenwood Utilities ceases its Henderson Station operation, MEAM will replace those generators with a new lower-cost unit through Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO).
MISO is a nonprofit, member- based organization that ensures low-cost electricity through high-voltage power lines in 15 states and some parts of Canada, according to a MISO fact sheet provided by the company.
“This will greatly benefit Greenwood Utilities and our valued rate-paying customers,” Sinclair said.
Sinclair said the Henderson Station was also becoming a hassle to maintain. Many machines there required handmade parts, since they were no longer being manufactured.
The generators have been paid off and will not cost Greenwood Utilities any additional expenses, Sinclair said.
“Greenwood Utilities and MEAM mutually believe that in the future, securing low-cost capacity from other sources is in the best financial interest of Greenwood Utilities and all other MEAM members,” Sinclair said.