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Duke Energy recently announced the opening of its new 750-megawatt combined-cycle natural gas plant at the W.S. Lee Station in Anderson County, South Carolina.
Construction of the $700 million plant began in March 2015. The project created more than 600 construction jobs and provided approximately $12 million in work to local subcontractors. The new combined-cycle unit is expected to generate about $4.4 million in tax revenue in 2019 for Anderson County.
"Highly efficient natural gas plants – like W.S. Lee – are helping us deliver a cleaner, smarter energy future for our customers," said Lynn Good, chairman, president and CEO of Duke Energy. "South Carolina is important to Duke Energy, and new investments like this further our commitment to power this community with reliable, affordable energy while continuing to be a partner that's helping prepare the region for future growth."
Combined-cycle natural gas units generate energy more efficiently and release significantly lower emissions than coal-fired units. For example, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide and other emissions are expected to drop by 87 percent overall in comparison to the station's previous coal-fired operation.
In 2014, Duke Energy closed two coal-fired units at the W.S. Lee Station and converted a third coal unit to natural gas in 2015. The company no longer operates any coal plants in South Carolina.
"We're very proud to see them use natural gas in our region and improve air quality by moving away from coal-fired plants," said Williamston Mayor Mack Durham.
Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, Duke Energy is one of the largest energy holding companies in the United States, with approximately 29,000 employees and a generating capacity of 49,500 megawatts.
For more information, visit www.duke-energy.com.