Natural gas combustion turbines to provide reliable generation to complement transition to majority renewables portfolio, while reducing carbon emissions
Evansville, Ind. – June 28, 2022– CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (NYSE: CNP) today announced its Indiana-based electric utility business, CenterPoint Energy Indiana South, received approval for the construction of natural gas generation from the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC), a key step in the company’s long-term electric generation transition plan. CenterPoint Energy intends to construct two natural gas combustion turbines (CTs) to replace portions of its existing coal-fired generation fleet. The company’s generation transition plan will significantly evolve the way the company generates power for its 150,000 customers across southwestern Indiana by combining a cleaner portfolio of renewables and complementary natural gas.
The estimated $334 million natural gas facility will provide an output of 460 megawatts (MW), sized appropriately to reliably support the anticipated electric generation needed upon the retirement of A.B. Brown units 1 and 2 in late 2023. The CTs will be constructed at the current site of the power plant in Posey County, Ind., and will assist CenterPoint Energy in delivering on its commitment to provide a cost-effective, well-balanced energy mix.
The company’s 2020 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) illustrated a preferred portfolio including nearly two-thirds of energy generated from renewable resources as well as natural gas generation, which is projected to ultimately save electric customers an estimated $320 million over the 20-year planning period. Through the IRP process, CenterPoint Energy performed significant analysis and considered public input to arrive at the most reliable and cost-effective solution for customers.
“Although the majority of the proposed generation outlined in our plan comes from renewable resources, there remains a need for reliable, resilient and fast-ramping generation to operate around-the-clock when the sun and wind are insufficient to power the renewable resources,” said Steve Greenley, Senior Vice President, Generation Development. “While the combustion turbines may not run constantly, it is very likely they will operate several hours each day in order to supplement our renewable generation with a lower carbon solution, when renewable facilities are not at peak generating levels.”
In addition, the company recently filed for securitization of its A.B. Brown assets, which was contingent on the IURC approval of the natural gas CTs and may result in up to $60 million in additional savings to customers over the same time period.
“Today’s approval will have no immediate impact on customer electric bills,” added Greenley. “The recovery of the investments associated with the CTs will be requested through a future electric rate case. When combining the savings to be realized through securitization and other bill reductions associated with the added renewable investments, the average residential customer is estimated to see a bill impact of less than $10 per month for the total generation transition.”
The replacement of most of the company’s coal-fired generation will help mitigate costs associated with compliance of ever-evolving environmental regulations and the higher operating costs of continuing to run the aging units. By replacing much of the coal-fired generation with significantly more efficient technologies like renewables, including a large percentage of universal solar, the replacement will move CenterPoint Energy significantly forward on achieving its goal of net zero on direct carbon emissions by 2035.
For more information on CenterPoint Energy’s long-term electric generation transition plan, visit www.centerpointenergy.com/smartenergyfuture.
CenterPoint Energy delivers electricity to approximately 150,000 customers in southwest Indiana in all or portions of Gibson, Dubois, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh and Warrick counties. Programs and services are operated under the brand CenterPoint Energy by Southern Indiana Gas and Electric Company d/b/a CenterPoint Energy Indiana South.
Forward Looking Statement:
This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this news release, the words “anticipate,” “believe,” “continue,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “goal,” “intend,” “may,” “objective,” “plan,” “potential,” “predict,” “projection,” “should,” “target,” “will” or other similar words are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions of management which are believed to be reasonable at the time made and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual events and results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Any statements in this news release regarding future events, including anticipated timing, savings and impact to customer bills as a result of the generation transition plan, including the CT facilities, the timing of CenterPoint Energy’s generation transition plan, including the anticipated retirement of the A.B. Brown facility and the construction and completion of the CT facilities and the anticipated capacity of such facilities, and the mix of renewable resources and expected financial benefits of such generation transition to customers, and any other statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Each forward-looking statement contained in this news release speaks only as of the date of this release. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the provided forward-looking information include risks and uncertainties relating to: (1) the impact of disruption to the global supply chain; (2) financial market conditions; (3) general economic conditions; (4) the timing and impact of future regulatory and legislative decisions; (5) effects of competition; (6) weather variations; (7) changes in business plans; and (8) other factors, risks and uncertainties discussed in CenterPoint Energy’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021, CenterPoint Energy’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2022 and other reports CenterPoint Energy or its subsidiaries may file from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Net Zero Disclaimer: While CenterPoint Energy believes that it has a clear path towards achieving its net zero emissions (Scope 1 and Scope 2) by 2035 goals, its analysis and path forward required it to make a number of assumptions. These goals and underlying assumptions involve risks and uncertainties and are not guarantees. Should one or more of CenterPoint Energy’s underlying assumptions prove incorrect, its actual results and ability to achieve net zero emissions by 2035 could differ materially from its expectations. Certain of the assumptions that could impact its ability to meet its net zero emissions goals include, but are not limited to: emission levels, service territory size and capacity needs remaining in line with company expectations (inclusive of changes related to the sale of CenterPoint Energy’s Natural Gas businesses in Arkansas and Oklahoma); regulatory approval of Indiana Electric’s generation transition plan; impacts of future environmental regulations or legislation; impacts of future carbon pricing regulation or legislation, including a future carbon tax; price, availability and regulation of carbon offsets; price of fuel, such as natural gas; cost of energy generation technologies, such as wind and solar, natural gas and storage solutions; adoption of alternative energy by the public, including adoption of electric vehicles; rate of technology innovation with regards to alternative energy resources; CenterPoint Energy’s ability to implement its modernization plans for its pipelines and facilities; the ability to complete and implement generation alternatives to Indiana Electric’s coal generation and retirement dates of Indiana Electric’s coal facilities by 2035; the ability to construct and/or permit new natural gas pipelines; the ability to procure resources needed to build at a reasonable cost, the lack of or scarcity of resources and labor, the lack of any project cancellations, construction delays or overruns and the ability to appropriately estimate costs of new generation; impact of any supply chain disruptions; changes in applicable standards or methodologies; and enhancement of energy efficiencies. In addition, because Texas is in an unregulated market, CenterPoint Energy’s Scope 2 estimates do not take into account Texas electric transmission and distribution assets in the line loss calculation and exclude emissions related to purchased power between 2024E-2026E. CenterPoint Energy’s Scope 3 estimates are based on the total natural gas supply delivered to residential and commercial customers as reported in the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) Form EIA-176 reports and do not take into account the emissions of transport customers and emissions related to upstream extraction. Please also review other factors, risks and uncertainties discussed in CenterPoint Energy’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021, CenterPoint Energy’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2022, and other reports CenterPoint Energy or its subsidiaries may file from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
About CenterPoint Energy
As the only investor-owned electric and gas utility based in Texas, CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (NYSE: CNP) is an energy delivery company with electric transmission and distribution, power generation and natural gas distribution operations that serve more than 7 million metered customers in Indiana, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Ohio and Texas. As of March 31, 2022, the company owned approximately $35 billion in assets. With approximately 8,900 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. For more information, visit CenterPointEnergy.com.