Progress Energy Carolinas — the merger between Duke Energy and Progress Energy —will accelerate the closing of the H.B. Robinson Unit 1 coal-fired plant near Hartsville.
The 177-megawatt plant will be retired this October, but will remain online through the summer season to help meet heightened electricity demand.
The company says it is modernizing its generation system. In a media release Friday, Progress Energy Carolinas stated:
“The decision to take the 52-year-old Robinson coal plant offline was made due to pending changes in environmental regulations and other rising costs for smaller, older technology plants. The cost of adding state-of-the-art emission controls on the small unit would be hundreds of millions of dollars. And the potential for additional emission regulations in the future would increase operating costs even further.”
The company also said. “The Hartsville plant’s retirement does not affect the Robinson nuclear plant, which is licensed for continued operation through 2030. Nor does it affect the company’s other major generation in South Carolina, the 790-MW Darlington County Plant, which is located near the Robinson plant and includes 13 combustion-turbine units fueled by natural gas and oil.”
PEC’s service territory includes Florence and Sumter counties.