Ameren spends $1 billion in environmental improvements for coal power plants

St. Louis, January 6, 2010 — Ameren Energy Resources Company, LLC, completed more than $1 billion in environmental improvement projects at its Illinois-based, coal-fired power plants.

AERC is the holding company for merchant generation and its energy marketing services for Ameren Corp.

In 2009, the AER merchant generating segment completed the 36-month installation of environmental control technologies at two coal power plants. AER installed a scrubber on its Duck Creek Power Plant, near Canton, Ill., and a scrubber on Unit 1 of Coffeen Plant, near Coffeen, Ill.

Reducing sulfur dioxide emissions by more than 90 percent, the scrubbers are designed to redirect the outlet stack gas through a spray-tower scrubber design where the gas mixes with water, a 20 percent limestone mixture and compressed air.

The sulfur dioxide in the flue gas then reacts with the limestone to produce a gypsum by-product that can either be sold for commercial use or placed into a landfill for disposal.

In addition, the company will be completing installation of yet another scrubber and electrostatic precipitator within the first quarter of 2010 on Unit 2 of the Coffeen Plant.

In 2009, a new precipitator was also installed at the Duck Creek Plant. Electrostatic precipitators offer an efficient way to capture particulates before they go into the atmosphere.

To further reduce mercury emissions, AER in 2009 also installed activated carbon injection systems at the E.D. Edwards Plant, at its Meredosia Plant near Jacksonville, Ill., at Newton Plant, in Jasper County, Ill., and at the Joppa (Ill.) Power Plant (an Electric Energy Inc., plant that is 80 percent owned by Ameren).

With activated carbon injection systems, powdered activated carbon absorbs the oxidized mercury from the flue gas, and the mercury is then collected with the fly ash in the plant’s particulate collection device.

These initiatives follow the installation of a range of combustion control technologies, like low-nitrogen oxide burners that reduce emissions at many of the Illinois plants.

 

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