UPDATE 1-NRG to add 2,000 MW of US natgas, solar power in 2013

Wed Feb 27, 2013 12:49pm EST

By Scott DiSavino

Feb 27 (Reuters) - NRG Energy Inc, the No. 2 U.S. power generating company, said on Wednesday it will add over 2,000 megawatts (MW) of natural gas and solar power generating capacity in 2013.

"In 2013, we expect over 2,000 MW of utility scale conventional and solar generation to come on line," NRG CEO David Crane told analysts on a call after the company released its fourth quarter earnings.

The 2,000 megawatts can power up to 2 million homes.

The new natural gas projects are the 550-MW El Segundo combined cycle plant and the 720-MW Marsh Landing peaking plant in California, and the 75-MW WA Parish peaking plant in Texas.

On the solar front, NRG expects units at several projects to enter service, including at Ivanpah in California, Agua Caliente in Arizona and the California Valley Solar Ranch in California.

Crane said the new projects "should generate over $500 million in incremental EBITDA (earnings before the deduction of interest, taxes and amortization expenses), almost all of which is fully contracted."

Some of the solar projects are partnerships in which NRG owns a partial share.

The 377-MW Ivanpah is a partnership between NRG, Google and BrightSource being built by Bechtel. The power from Ivanpah will be sold to units of California power companies PG&E Corp and Edison International, according to the Ivanpah website.

The 290-MW Agua Caliente is a partnership between NRG and Berkshire Hathaway Inc's MidAmerican Energy being developed by FirstSolar Inc. The power from Agua Caliente will be sold to PG&E, according to the Agua Caliente website.

The power from NRG's 250-MW California Valley Solar Ranch will be sold to PG&E, according to NRG's website.

As for existing plants, NRG said it was looking to repower several units, including Astoria in New York City, but was waiting for long term power purchase agreements with creditworthy buyers. See

The company did not name any new plant retirements in addition to those GenOn said it would shut over the next few years..

It did mention previously announced plans to mothball units at the Werner oil-fired plant and the Gilbert gas and oil-fired plant in New Jersey.

A couple walks along the rough surf during sunset at Oahu's North Shore, December 26, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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