Entergy Louisiana’s two-unit, 560-MW combined cycle plant in Westwego, La., just outside New Orleans, completed construction on Dec. 26, both under budget and several months ahead of its original schedule (Figure 3). It’s the first new plant Entergy Louisiana has added in nearly 30 years.
|3. Ready to roll. Entergy Louisiana completed construction on its new Ninemile 6 combined cycle plant months ahead of schedule and about $70 million under budget. The plant was dedicated in January. Courtesy: Entergy Louisiana|
The Ninemile Point site has been generating power for New Orleans since 1951, but the original two boiler units have been retired for years. Unit 3 is nearing end-of-life, and the new Unit 6 will help replace the retired capacity. Construction, led by CB&I, began in early 2012.
Unit 6 will operate on natural gas but has the ability to burn fuel oil if necessary. This is an important concern given the location, which was hit hard by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. In the event natural gas delivery is disrupted, the plant will be able to switch over seamlessly to fuel oil drawn from on-site tanks. The building pad was also raised 4 feet to protect against possible flooding.
Though budgeted at $721 million, the plant was completed for about $655 million. Ninemile 6’s output will be shared among Entergy Louisiana (55%), Entergy Gulf States Louisiana (25%), and Entergy New Orleans (20%) via life-of-unit power purchase agreements.
—Thomas W. Overton, JD