First large-scale center tests emerging technologies for environmental and economic benefits
Center offers potential for new uses of coal ash stored in landfills and closed-in-place ponds
ATLANTA, Aug. 10, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Georgia Power, in collaboration with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and Southern Company, marked the opening earlier this year of the first Ash Beneficial Use Center (ABUC). The ABUC will host pilot projects and lead continued testing of technologies to potentially further develop useful products from recycled coal combustion products (CCPs) such as coal ash.
This facility is located at Georgia Power's Plant Bowen and will allow for testing of pilot project technologies to increase the beneficial use of coal ash. Activities that will take place at this center include reviewing ways to optimize coal ash characteristics to better fit commercial applications, speeding and facilitating development of emerging beneficial-use technologies, understanding performance of re-use products and developing realistic cost profiles.
"As a part of our ash pond closure efforts, Georgia Power is always looking for opportunities to use coal ash that are not only beneficial to our customers, but for our communities and environment," said Dr. Mark Berry, vice president of environmental and natural resources for Georgia Power. "The Ash Beneficial Use Center is paving the way for the latest coal ash technologies. We hope to see closed ash ponds and landfills become resources as new and improved uses are developed and proven through this center."
Today, Georgia Power already recycles more than 85 percent of all ash and gypsum, including more than 95 percent of fly ash, it produces from current operations for various beneficial reuses such as concrete production as well as other construction products.
"Developing cost-effective technologies to recycle coal ash is an important aspect of the clean energy transition," said Neva Espinoza, EPRI vice president of energy supply and low-carbon resources. "This unique research center provides an opportunity for utilities, researchers, and vendors to collaborate and advance technologies from benchtop to commercial operation."
By promoting advancements in beneficial use processes and technologies, this center will ultimately provide economic and environmental benefits by bringing cost-effective technologies to market and increasing the potential value of ash and other CCPs stored in landfills or ash ponds. This will result in long-term economic and environmental benefits to customers through the increased beneficial use of CCPs.
Research and larger-scale engineering tests and demonstrations are necessary to further develop advanced processes and beneficial use technologies that could increase the opportunities for CCP use. Since current CCPs are primarily supplied by operating power plants, this center aims to develop new technologies or processes that expand beneficial use applications and potential markets.
Mitchell Reuse Project
At Georgia Power's Plant Mitchell, an ash beneficial use project, is removing approximately two million tons of stored coal ash from the existing ash ponds at the retired coal plant for use in Portland cement manufacturing. The project at Plant Mitchell marks the first time that stored ash from existing ash ponds at sites in Georgia is being excavated for beneficial use as part of an ash pond closure project. Georgia Power continues to look for additional opportunities similar to Plant Mitchell to beneficiate CCPs at other plant as we proceed with ash pond closures.
About Georgia Power
Georgia Power is the largest electric subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO), America's premier energy company. Value, Reliability, Customer Service and Stewardship are the cornerstones of the Company's promise to 2.6 million customers in all but four of Georgia's 159 counties. Committed to delivering clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy at rates below the national average, Georgia Power maintains a diverse, innovative generation mix that includes nuclear, coal and natural gas, as well as renewables such as solar, hydroelectric and wind. Georgia Power focuses on delivering world-class service to its customers every day and the Company is recognized by J.D. Power as an industry leader in customer satisfaction. For more information, visit www.GeorgiaPower.com and connect with the Company on Facebook (Facebook.com/GeorgiaPower), Twitter (Twitter.com/GeorgiaPower) and Instagram (Instagram.com/ga_power).
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Certain information contained in this release is forward-looking information based on current expectations and plans that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking information includes, among other things, statements concerning future ash beneficial use projects and expected benefits from the ABUC. Georgia Power cautions that there are certain factors that can cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information that has been provided. The reader is cautioned not to put undue reliance on this forward-looking information, which is not a guarantee of future performance and is subject to a number of uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside the control of Georgia Power; accordingly, there can be no assurance that such suggested results will be realized. The following factors, in addition to those discussed in Georgia Power's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, Georgia Power's Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2021 and June 30, 2021 and subsequent securities filings, could cause actual results to differ materially from management expectations as suggested by such forward-looking information: the impact of recent and future federal and state regulatory changes, including tax, environmental, and other laws and regulations to which Georgia Power is subject, as well as changes in application of existing laws and regulations; the extent and timing of costs and legal requirements related to coal combustion residuals; current and future litigation or regulatory investigations, proceedings, or inquiries; the ability to control costs and avoid cost and schedule overruns during the development, construction and operation of facilities or other projects; advances in technology; and catastrophic events such as fires, earthquakes, explosions, floods, tornadoes, hurricanes and other storms, droughts, pandemic health events, political unrest or other similar occurrences. Georgia Power expressly disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking information.
SOURCE Georgia Power
For further information: Media, Georgia Power Media Relations, (404) 506-7676 or (800) 282-1696, www.georgiapower.com