Powering Strong Communities

Lansing, Michigan, Utility Brings Gas Plant Online To Replace Retired Coal Plant

The Lansing Board of Water & Light (BWL) in Michigan has brought online a 250-megawatt (MW) natural gas-fired combined-cycle plant, replacing a retired coal-fired plant.

The $500 million Delta Energy Park replaces BWL’s 350-MW coal-fired Eckert Power Station which retired in 2020, and supports the utility’s increased renewable portfolio. The new plant, at the Erickson Power station in Delta Township, is BWL’s second natural gas plant.

The 162-MW coal-fired Erickson Power Station, which was commissioned in 1973, is scheduled to retire by December 2022. BWL said the retirement will make it the largest utility in Michigan to generate coal-free power by 2022, reducing its carbon emissions by 80 percent.

“Delta Energy Park marks a milestone in BWL history for being able to generate safe, affordable power to the greater Lansing region,” Dick Peffley, BWL’s general manager said in a statement.

“Along with moving us closer to our clean energy goals, this plant has opened the door for tremendous regional economic growth opportunities, such as BWL being the catalyst for the State of Michigan and General Motors to locate GM’s $2.6 billion electric vehicle battery plant just a few miles down the road. DEP has also resulted in ongoing conversations with new, large industrial customers looking to build in Lansing.”

The Delta Energy Park plant entered service in March and was built by a combination of local and national firms, including Lansing Power Constructors, a joint venture of Lansing’s Clark Construction and Barton Malow, as construction manager; Black & Veatch as design engineer; Sergeant & Lundy as owner’s engineer; and Michigan’s Consumers Energy as transmission line contractor.

BWL has around 100,000 electric customers, 58,000 water customers, 155 steam customers and 19 chilled water customers.