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City Utilities Continues Construction on New Power Station

Construction is already underway on a new coal power plant for City Utilities in Springfield. KSMU's Kristian Kriner reports.

Armed with ear plugs and hard hats, local media took a tour this morning of City Utilities Power Station.

The coal fired power plant is going up west of Springfield, near Republic.

It's an addition to the current Southwest Power Station.

The power plant will have two substructures: one building for a boiler and one for a generator.

Overshadowing the two substructures will be 513 foot chimney, which is at 190 feet right now.

Scott Miller of CUs electric supply says this power plant will help control how much customers pay for electricity.

"We'll be able to manufacture their power here and control our cost for them. Without this project we would be buying our power in the market at higher costs. So without this project actually our customers would have seen a lot higher increases in their electric bill," Miller said.

Local environmentalists have voiced concerns about the effects the coal burning plant will have on the earth's atmosphere.

Miller says at least 100 million dollars will be used for environmental equipment.

"We went to the Department of Natural Resources and asked them for an air permit. They issued an air permit which basically guaranteed that this would be one of the cleanest plants in the United States," Miller said.

He says the new power plant is necessary because City Utilities gains at least 1800 new customers every year.

The power station will generate 300 megawatts of electricity throughout Springfield.

It is scheduled to be completed 2010.

For KSMU News, Kristian Kriner.