Gas-powered station wins go-ahead

The Australian state of Victoria is to get another power station after the Environmental Protection Authority gave the green light for the first of two stages of a gas-fired power station to be built at Laverton North by Singapore Power. The new plant will produce a maximum of 400mw when both stages are completed. Approval for stage 1 of the power station was granted on 15 January. Singapore Power has been given approval for four separate gas turbine configurations, ranging from 84.2 mw to 268 mw. The costs for the four configurations will range from USD 55 million to USD 175 million and, unlike two recent gas peaking plants built by AGL and Edison Mission, the generating equipment will be new. The first stage will be an open cycle gas turbine plant operating for between 10 and 200 hours a year. Construction of stage 1 is due to begin in January 2003 and the plant is likely to be in production by the following summer. During 2003, Singapore will decide whether to implement stage 2 of the project: the fitting of a steam boiler and turbine to be heated by exhaust gases from the gas turbines. Stage 2 would see capacity boosted to between 140 and 400 mw, depending on which configuration is chosen for stage 1.
Because Victoria’s gas pipeline from Gippsland operates at near full capacity during cold weather, Singapore Power will have to instal storage tanks for a secondary fuel, either diesel or methanol, to be used to fuel the turbines if gas supplies are unavailable.

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