312 MW of Biomass to Power Burger Production in Ohio

FirstEnergy Corp. said that it plans to convert two units at its R.E. Burger Plant in Shadyside, Ohio, to generate electricity using biomass. When the retrofit is complete, the plant is expected to be one of the largest biomass facilities in the United States.

The capital cost for retrofitting the burger plant to burn biomass is estimated to be approximately US $200 million. Once the project is completed, units 4 and 5 at the burger plant could be capable of producing up to 312 megawatts (MW) of electricity, which is its current capacity.

“Retrofitting the burger plant for biomass will expand our diverse generation portfolio even further and continue our support of state and federal efforts to increase reliance on renewable energy sources,” said Anthony Alexander, FirstEnergy’s president and CEO. “And, the project will provide a new and exciting future for the plant and continued economic support in Belmont County.”

Ultimately, the company expects the project to feature a closed-loop system. This would mean using biomass derived from an energy crop grown specifically for use as a fuel source. In addition, burning principally with biomass at the plant would produce lower emissions overall than if it was retrofitted with a scrubber.

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