Duke Energy retiring 2 coal-fired power plants
Friday, September 28, 2012
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Duke Energy Corp.'s Progress Energy Carolinas subsidiary will retire two coal-fired power plants on Monday, including one built in 1923.
The retirements of the Cape Fear plant near Moncure, N.C., and the H.B. Robinson Unit 1 plant near Hartsville, S.C., were announced in July.
When the plants close, Progress Energy Carolinas will have idled about one-third of its coal-powered operations. Utilities have been switching from coal to plants that burn natural gas, which is cheaper and produces lower emissions.
The 316-megawatt Cape Fear plant opened nearly 80 years ago. In the late 1950s it had six units and was the largest plant in the company's system. Two units closed in 1977, two last year, and the last two on Monday. Three oil-powered units will remain open but run mostly just when electricity demand is highest, the company said.
The Robinson unit opened in 1960. A nuclear reactor is located in the same facility.