A New Albany power plant will retire two of its four generating units by February.
The Gallagher Power Plant in New Albany was built in the 1960s, and has been running four coal-powered units since then. But now, the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission has approved Duke Energy’s request to shut down half of the plant.
Duke spokesman Lew Middleton says the company was also approved to purchase part of a natural gas power plant in Vermillion County, Indiana. This will provide enough energy to take two of the coal-fired units offline.
But Middleton says the remaining two units will continue burning coal for the foreseeable future. Measures have been taken to make sure the remaining units can comply with new EPA air pollution regulations.
“We are currently burning low-sulfur coal in the units and we have installed pollution control equipment that will put us in the position to comply with the EPA’s regulations,” he said.
Duke isn’t planning any layoffs at the plant. Middleton says the company will cut back on contractor labor and manage the workforce through attrition and employee retirements.
The Gallagher plant can be seen from west Louisville, and environmental groups say the closure of two units should improve the city’s air quality.