Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) on Wednesday issued an air quality plan approval for a project to build the state’s first power plant to run at least partially on locally sourced Marcellus Shale gas. Moxie Energy’s proposed 936-MW plant in Asylum Township, Bradford County, uses two power blocks that will each consist of a combustion gas turbine and a steam turbine.

According to Moxie, the so-called Liberty Power Generation Plant project will be fueled only by natural gas (no diesel backup) and will not “require river water or any other large source of water typically used for cooling needs.” It will consist of two combustion turbine generators that will each produce between 225 MW and 350 MW of electricity. The combustion turbines will be connected to two heat recovery steam generators where the hot exhaust gases from the combustion turbines will produce steam that will be directed to two steam turbines. The steam turbines will produce an additional 250 MW to 300 MW of electricity. Construction of the $800 million-plus project will take about 30 months.

The DEP staff’s technical review determined that the proposed levels of air emissions satisfy federal and state best available control technology and the lowest achievable emission rate requirements. The agency also determined that the proposed emissions from the plant will not cause or significantly contribute to air pollution in violation of national ambient air quality standards.

“Today is a red-letter day for Pennsylvania,” DEP Secretary Mike Krancer said. “With this approval, Moxie now has all that it needs from the DEP to move forward with the construction of this historic facility, which will use clean, pipeline-quality, locally produced natural gas as fuel.”

Moxie Patriot LLC, a sister company to Moxie Liberty LLC, has applied for an air quality plan approval for a similar facility to be built in Clinton Township, Lycoming County. The DEP is reviewing that application, it said.

Sources: POWERnews, Penn. DEP, Moxie Energy

—Sonal Patel, Senior Writer (@POWERmagazine)