Jan 24 West Virginia regulators approved
Appalachian Power's $173 million plan to upgrade transmission
facilities in the Kanawha Valley to help ensure system
reliability as several coal-fired power plants shut over the
next several years.
Appalachian Power, a unit of U.S. power company American
Electric Power Co Inc, said in a press release that it
did not request a rate increase related to the project.
AEP said it plans to shut the 400-megawatt Kanawha River
coal plant and the remaining units at the 580-MW Sporn plant,
both in West Virginia, in 2015.
Those shutdowns, combined with other plant closures in the
region, are changing the way power flows on the transmission
grid, AEP said.
AEP said the last major reinforcement to this backbone
electric grid was nearly 40 years ago. The company said that in
most cases, the existing 138-kilovolt (kV) facilities that were
built in the 1920s to 1940s will be replaced with larger 138-kV
lines and taller and heavier structures.
AEP expects to complete construction of the project in 2017.
Appalachian Power serves 1 million customers in Virginia,
West Virginia and Tennessee.