Wartsila wins cooperative utility power plant order

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Helsinki, October 7, 2010 — Wartsila, a supplier of decentralized power plant solutions, has won a power plant order from a U.S. cooperative utility.

In September, Wartsila was awarded the contract to supply the engineering and equipment for the Lea County Electric Cooperative, Inc. Generation Plant, located in Lovington, New Mexico.

The contract calls for Wartsila to supply five Wartsila 20V34SG generating sets, together with associated equipment including selective catalytic reduction units for reducing greenhouse gas and NOX emissions.

The plant is scheduled to be fully operational by June 2012. The more than 40 MW of electricity generated by the power plant will be distributed to the LCEC Members and the Southwest Power Pool. This output can be increased in the future with minor modifications, since the Wartsila engines are already sized to accommodate the increase.

Cooperative utilities provide electricity to its members, with each customer being an owner of the business. This non-profit concept was introduced in the U.S. in the 1930s in order to bring electricity to rural areas, where otherwise it may not have been economically viable for a utility to invest in a power infrastructure.

Since LCEC is a member owned utility obtaining financing for this project from the U.S. Government’s Rural Utility Service, it was necessary for Wartsila to comply with RUS contract requirements. This is the first Wartsila contract to be financed by RUS.

“The suitability of Wartsila’s power plant technology to the needs of the American cooperative utilities is now well established. The LCEC project is the fifth such cooperative to select our power generating solution. It is critical for these plants to reach full plant output within five minutes from warm stand-by mode, and Wartsila has this capability. The outstanding simple cycle heat rate was another critical factor in the client’s choice of Wartsila equipment as was the fact that the Wartsila equipment does not consume process water,” commented Dennis Finn, Business Development Manager, Wartsila Power Plants in North America.

With this new order, Wartsila has more than 1,500 MW of flexible power plant capacity, either installed or on order in the U.S.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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