A recent legal notice appearing the Hope Star raised some local concerns that SWEPCO was increasing production at its Fulton-based Turk Plant, but the notice was apparently misunderstood, according to a SWEPCO spokesperson Tuesday evening.

A recent legal notice appearing the Hope Star raised some local concerns that SWEPCO was increasing production at its Fulton-based Turk Plant, but the notice was apparently misunderstood, according to a SWEPCO spokesperson Tuesday evening.
“SWEPCO is not increasing production at Turk. The plant will continue to operate with a maximum generating capacity of 650 MW,” Brian Bond, Vice President External Affairs, said.
“The public notice was to receive public comments on SWEPCO’s proposal to replace an existing 130 BHP emergency diesel engine with a new 300 BHP emergency diesel engine.  The emergency diesel engine is used to transfer storm water from an on-site pond to a holding tank to ensure environmental compliance,” he said.
The air emissions associated with the new diesel engine will actually decrease when compared to the existing diesel engine, Bond said.
The proposed replacement engine also doe not infringe on a standing consent degree SWEPCO entered as part of a legal settlement with the Sierra Club seven years ago.
“As of December 31, 2016, SWEPCO had met all conditions agreed to as a part of the consent decree.  Regarding future energy production, according to SWEPCO’s Integrated Resource Plan, SWEPCO will deploy a combination of wind, solar and natural gas combined cycle generation,” Bond said.
“It is important to note that no new fossil fuel generation will be located in the vicinity of the Turk plant,” he said.
With regards to some continued citizen concerns about local air quality, Bond said, “The Turk Plant is equipped with the most efficient environmental control systems available in industry resulting in very low emissions of all regulated air pollutants from the facility.  The Turk air permit is among the most stringent in the United States.”
Previous articles in the Hope Star noted that Turk Power Plant is one of the cleanest, most efficient coal-fueled plants in the country. The $1.8 billion facility began operation in Hempstead County in December 2012.