To balance supply with our growing customer demand for energy, Georgia Power considers a wide range of energy resources. Each energy resource has both benefits and limitations. We are committed to researching how to make traditional energy resources less impactful on the environment and at the same time, still provide reliable and cost-effective energy for our customers. Read below to see our latest energy advancements with traditional energy resources.
Since 2000, Southern Company has added 8,500 megawatts of cleaner, natural gas-fueled production. In fact, most utilities in the U.S. have added only natural gas-fueled plants to their fleets in the past several years.
Natural gas-fueled combined cycle power plants continue to grow in efficiency through advances in turbine technology.
Natural gas-fueled power plants will remain a viable option because they are clean and relatively fast, and are less costly to build.
Natural gas-fueled plants do produce carbon emissions, but at a rate about half that of coal-fueled plants.
Georgia Power is considering development of one of the largest biomass power plants in the nation at Plant Mitchell near Albany, Ga. The project would convert a 155-megawatt unit that has been operating since 1964 into a 96-megawatt, biomass-fired boiler.
Within a 100-mile radius of Plant Mitchell, there are 8 million acres of forest and timberlands, and 11 million tons/year of surplus supply wood fuel.
Most of the wood fuel likely to be used in the plant is considered unusable waste by timber companies, and therefore will not compete with their needed wood supply.
Approximately 1 million tons of the yearly 11 million-ton wood fuel supply will be needed to operate the plant.
The biomass conversion will have lower fuel and operating costs when compared to continued operation using coal, thereby making the plant more cost-effective for Georgia Power customers.
Water Research Center
By late 2012, Georgia Power's Plant Bowen will be the site of a state-of-the-art water research facility. The Water Research Center (WRC) will provide a site for testing technologies to improve efficiency in water withdrawal, consumption and recycling, and will improve water quality associated with the power generation process.
The WRC will include seven research focus areas:
- Moisture recovery
- Cooling tower and advanced cooling systems
- Zero liquid discharge options
- Low volume wastewater treatment
- Solid waste landfill water management
- Carbon technology water issues
- Water modeling, monitoring and best management practices
The center is a partnership between Georgia Power and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and will be operated by Southern Research Institute (SRI) at Georgia Power's Plant Bowen near Cartersville, Ga.
Results from research conducted at the WRC will be shared with Georgia Power and other EPRI members.
The center is an extension of a pilot project that began in May 2010 at Plant Bowen to identify opportunities to address water withdrawals and consumption. As a result of the pilot, technology has been implemented to reduce water withdrawals for the plant's scrubber process, an environmental control that reduces sulfur dioxide emissions.
Georgia Power and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) are researching technologies to help solve water issues.
Get an overview of our different plants and see how they work.
Did You Know?
The amount of solar energy that strikes the Earth in one hour is more than enough to provide all of the Earth's energy needs for a complete year.
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