About Killingly Energy Center/NTE Energy
How much energy will KEC produce?
The project will produce 630 MW of baseload power, enough to power approximately 500,000 homes, and will be one of the cleanest, most efficient natural gas generation facilities in North America.
Will the electricity generated by KEC be sold to Connecticut homes and businesses?
Like all New England power generation facilities, KEC’s electricity will be delivered to the regional grid for use across the six state region. The regional grid operator, ISO New England, determines how and where electrons flow across the electric grid. However, ISO New England has called for additional electricity generation in southern New England, including Connecticut, to ease supply constraints and meet local demand.
Will KEC lower electricity prices for Connecticut consumers?
Electricity prices are determined by a variety of factors, including fuel availability and costs, generator availability, legislative and regulatory policies, and even the weather. While KEC cannot guarantee a reduction in consumer electricity costs for local ratepayers, our market-based, economic modeling predicts cost savings of $215 million per year for Connecticut ratepayers during the first five years of operation because KEC will displace older, costlier generation.
NTE has completed an economic and environmental benefits study, which can be found on our website at www.killinglyenergycenter.com/resources.
Has NTE ever operated a power plant before?
The NTE team includes some of the most experienced engineers, developers and commercial professionals in the industry. Collectively, NTE team members have built, owned and/or operated dozens of traditional and renewable generation facilities across the country and around the world, representing tens of thousands of megawatts of power generation. Currently, we own two projects which are currently under construction in Ohio and North Carolina, and both are expected to be operational in 2018.
Why build KEC in Killingly?
Killingly is rich in infrastructure to support power generation, including access to existing natural gas and electric transmission lines. In addition, the actual KEC site selected conforms to the Town’s long term conservation and development plan and is located in an area identified for future industrial development. What’s more, Connecticut and the region are in need of reliable baseload power to replace older and high-polluting oil and coal power plants, as well as aging nuclear.
Will there be opportunities for local residents to participate in the permitting and development process?
Yes, both the DEEP and CSC processes are designed to provide opportunities for public participation and input, including a local public hearing prior to their final decisions. What’s more, from day one we’ve been meeting with people in the local community. We take a personal approach to development projects, listen closely to community members and take their concerns seriously. We invite anyone to contact us directly with questions or comments.
Will the KEC property require local zoning changes?
The Connecticut Siting Council (CSC) will consider Killingly’s zoning regulations and preferences in the course of its decision on KEC’s CSC application, but zoning changes are not required.
Will NTE pursue a tax abatement from the Town of Killingly?
NTE will be one of the largest tax payers – if not the largest taxpayer – in the community. Yes, we expect to enter into a mutually beneficial tax agreement with the Town, allowing for the delivery of consistent, sustained municipal tax revenue over the operational life of the facility. On average, we expect to pay the Town millions every year, which could help lower tax rates, or provide other important Town services or infrastructure improvements. Additionally, we will also create a community benefits package that delivers tangible benefits to the community beyond tax revenues.
Why can’t NTE develop KEC on the site of a retired coal or oil plant?
We agree that re-developing a retired coal or oil facility would be ideal. However, these old sites are frequently located in geographic areas that do not have access to an interstate natural gas pipeline. For the few sites with sufficient natural gas supply, current owners typically retain these facilities for future redevelopment, making them unavailable to NTE.
How much noise will KEC create when operating?
KEC will be a quiet neighbor. The facility’s layout is intentionally designed to minimize impact to ambient noise levels. Generating units will be located in the interior of the site, housed in acoustically treated enclosures inside the turbine building to reduce noise levels significantly. State and local noise regulations require noise at the property boundaries to be no higher than 51 dBA (equivalent to a quiet office setting) and levels will drop off quickly from there.
A detailed noise study has been completed and can be found on our website at www.killinglyenergycenter.com/resources
What features will KEC incorporate to reduce light pollution?
Advances in lighting technology will allow KEC to have a very limited lighting impact. Downward-facing directional lighting will be used to project light only where it is needed. The facility will use motion-detecting lights and manual task lighting wherever possible and safe, to reduce ambient lighting. Orange sodium lights will not be employed. Additionally, the FAA has deemed our facility as having ‘no hazard to air navigation’, which means no markings or lighting is required on the stack for aviation safety.
How tall will the stack be and will the facility be visible?
KEC will have a single stack standing 150 feet tall, compared to the existing three, 165-foot stacks at the Lake Road Generating Facility. Our site also sits in one of the lower elevations within the wooded Quinebaug River Valley, which will reduce visual impacts considerably.
NTE has completed a visual impact study, which can be found on our website at www.killinglyenergycenter.com/resources.
How will KEC impact property values?
Many factors determine a property’s value in a community, including the quality of the public schools, the safety of local neighborhoods, the stability of the community’s tax base and a healthy business and economic development climate. KEC is being sited adjacent to the industrial park and in an area designated for industrial development. Given the existing industrial businesses and infrastructure, the added jobs to the community, as well as payment of significant property taxes every year, KEC could have a positive impact on Killingly property values. KEC will also support other important Town services or infrastructure improvements. These revenues could also be used to lower the tax rate for local residents.
NTE has completed an economic and environmental benefits study, which can be found here: website at www.killinglyenergycenter.com/resources.
Will KEC construction require blasting? Will local wells be monitored?
Yes, blasting will be required. KEC will obtain all required permits and work with an experienced contractor who is familiar with the area’s geology and hydrology. In addition, KEC will develop and implement a plan to monitor neighboring wells prior to the blasting and mitigate any issues resulting from it.
How much additional traffic will KEC create and will there be upgrades to Lake Road?
KEC will add some additional traffic to Lake Road during construction, but the existing roadway network and infrastructure are capable of handling these increased volumes. Once operational, KEC is expected to add a negligible amount of traffic. Vehicles exiting the facility will be directed to the east, toward the industrial park, and the existing “No Thru Trucks” sign will be moved to the west of the KEC site. To accommodate larger trucks accessing the site, widening of Lake Road may be necessary along the curve just east of the site.
During rare occasions when the ultra-low sulfur distillate tank needs to be replenished, KEC will be serviced by approximately one truck every 30 minutes, which would have no significant effect on current traffic operations.
KEC has completed a Traffic Impact Report, available on our website at www.killinglyenergycenter.com/resources.
Will neighbors feel vibrations when the KEC facility is operating?
No. The facility does not produce any vibrations that can be felt beyond the turbine pedestal.
Will ammonia be stored on the site? What will it be used for?
Yes. We will inject 19% Aqueous Ammonia (81% water / 19% ammonia) upstream of the SCR catalyst in order to reduce NOx emissions. Aqueous Ammonia, and particularly at this low concentration, is substantially safer than Anhydrous Ammonia (which is a gas) due not only to its lower concentration, but also because it is easily contained. We will store approximately 12,000 gallons of Aqueous Ammonia on site in storage tanks with secondary containment.
Will the KEC facility be safe?
Yes, KEC will be safe. Safety is our highest priority. KEC will incorporate the latest technologies, employ highly trained personnel and utilize the latest industry safety procedures in order to minimize the possibility of any accidents during construction, testing, start-up and operation. Sophisticated fire suppression systems will be integrated into the project’s design. We will work closely with the fire chief and local fire district to ensure they have an intimate knowledge of the KEC facility and are equipped to quickly respond in the unlikely event of an incident.
What will NTE do to protect KEC against cyber-attacks?
Cybersecurity is a top priority for the electricity generation industry as a whole and for NTE. With that in mind, we will hire an experienced operations company with strong cyber security standards and a history of successful cyber security implementation. This operations contractors will utilize the latest technology to protect the integrity and operation of all plant equipment and systems from cybersecurity threats.
How will emergency vehicles and residential traffic traverse Lake Road during construction associated with the lateral upgrade?
NTE will work closely with Yankee Gas, Town officials, the state police and fire district to minimize any traffic disruptions for Lake Road residents and ensure unimpeded access for all emergency vehicles during the upgrade of the lateral. The short distance of the lateral within Lake Road will also minimize the duration of potential disruption.
Who will be responsible for the demolition and decommissioning of the plant?
As a condition to approving the application for a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need, the CSC will require that KEC have a plan in place for the safe demolition and decommissioning of the plant.
Will KEC be protected against seismic tremors or an earthquake?
Yes, KEC will incorporate design and construction features that will allow it to safely operate in the event of any localized seismic activity. Importantly, the soils at the site are not considered to be susceptible to seismically induced liquefaction and the geographic area is not prone to significant seismic activity.
Shouldn’t we be relying more on renewable energy sources?
Yes. Renewables will continue to play an increasingly important role in Connecticut’s and New England’s electric generation mix. KEC is an important source in a robust renewable energy portfolio. As an efficient and fast-ramping baseload power generation facility, KEC will back up wind and solar generation and will keep the lights on when the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine. By balancing out wind and solar intermittency, KEC will enable greater utilization and integration of renewables.
Will the proximity of other power plants in this region negatively impact air quality in Killingly?
We know there are concerns regarding the proximity of existing and potential power plants to Killingly. It’s easy to imagine that these plants are collectively contributing to a decline in Killingly’s air quality but, in fact, the exact opposite is true. Years of air quality data clearly demonstrate that the presence of these new, more efficient natural gas plants has contributed to continuous improvements in air quality in Killingly and the broader region. In fact, within a 100-mile radius of Killingly, over 4500 MW (seven power plants) of coal and oil generation are retiring, or at risk of retirement, thanks to cleaner, more efficient power generation sources in the region.
As each new gas-fired combined cycle plant begins operation, older oil and coal plants with higher emission levels run less frequently, creating incremental improvements in Killingly’s air quality.
What’s more, Killingly is not unique in the number and proximity of power plants in its immediate vicinity. Various communities throughout southern New England show similar counts of power generation units. According to Richard Pirelli, the director of planning and standards at the CT Borough of Air Management (within DEEP), the reality is that over 90% of Connecticut air pollution comes from out-of-state, from upwind coal- and oil-burning power plants in the Midwest and South, as well as mobile emissions (cars). By contrast, KEC will contribute to emissions decreases by displacing 1.5 million tons of CO2 (equivalent to planting over 35 million trees or taking over 50,000 cars off the road for five years), 3,500 tons of NOx and 1,900 tons of SO2 during the first five years of operation alone.
All of KEC’s air modeling results – both single source and cumulative – demonstrate that KEC will meet all ambient air quality standards at all times and in every location in Killingly and beyond.
Will KEC protect local air quality standards?
KEC will be among the cleanest, most efficient natural gas power generation facilities in North America, utilizing state-of-the-art electric generation technology that will allow it to operate 25% more efficiently than the average electric generator in Connecticut. This means KEC will displace the operation of older, higher-emitting oil and coal-fired plants that would otherwise be needed to meet regional energy demand, helping improve overall air quality in Connecticut and New England.
Our air quality analysis was completed following Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) guidelines. The analysis is based on worst case scenario assumptions. Put another way, the analysis intentionally overstates the project’s potential impacts to ensure protection of air quality. Even with these worst-case assumptions, KEC’s modeled impacts are well within all applicable ambient air quality standards that have been established to protect even the most sensitive individuals.
KEC will use a continuous air emissions monitoring system which measures and records emission levels to confirm and demonstrate our ongoing compliance with all federal and state emission standards and programs. This data is reported regularly to the DEEP and is available to the public.
NTE has submitted an air permit application, as well as an economic and environmental benefits study, which can be found on our website at www.killinglyenergycenter.com/resources.
What is the “significant impact area” and what does it mean?
The “significant impact area” is a technical designation used by DEEP and the USEPA to determine the scope of our required air permit modeling analysis. It does not represent an area that will be subject to any air quality standard exceedances. All of KEC’s air modeling results – both single source and cumulative – demonstrate that KEC will meet all ambient air quality standards at all times and in every location in Killingly and beyond.
Why do we need more power plants?
Over 30% -- or more than 10,000 megawatts -- of regional electricity generation could be gone by 2020 due to planned and likely facility retirements. That includes 401 megawatts of coal generation and 1,772 megawatts of oil-fired generation in Connecticut alone. So while electricity demand may increase slightly or remain flat, more generation is needed to fill the void left by the retiring coal and oil facilities. Connecticut’s Integrated Resource Plan calls for reliable, clean and cost-effective electric resources, including natural gas powered generation, to ensure Connecticut has sufficient capacity to meet demand, and Killingly Energy Center provides this clean, cost-effective capacity.
How much water will KEC use? Where will it come from? What impact will it have on Alexander’s Lake and the surrounding watershed?
Because KEC will utilize air-cooled technology, water needs are reduced by 95% when compared to water-cooled facilities. KEC’s average water use will be up to 50,000-100,000 gallons per day. In the rare event that natural gas is not available and KEC must operate on ultra-low sulfur distillate in order to maintain grid reliability, water requirements would be up to 400,000 gallons per day. We expect this would occur only for several hours on the order of once every 2-3 years based on historical precedents. By comparison, it takes about 312,000 gallons to water a golf course each day, 360,000 gallons to cool a data center for a day and 540,000 gallons per day to make six inches of snow at a ski resort.
The limited water needs of KEC will be provided by CT Water using their existing resources without any additional use of the Killingly Industrial Park well. CT Water’s system has the capacity to sustainably provide up to 400,000 gallons per day to KEC. KEC may facilitate a connection to adjacent CT Water infrastructure, creating enhanced supply for the Killingly area.
KEC will not impact the water quality or quantity of Alexander’s Lake. As stated above, CT Water will meet the KEC demand from existing infrastructure and wells that are hydrogeologically separated from Alexander’s Lake and without any additional use of the industrial park well.
How will stormwater be controlled on the site and discharged to the environment?
NTE has closely examined existing and proposed surface and subsurface conditions at the site in order to identify and mitigate any potential impacts to the quality of stormwater discharges.
The project’s stormwater design integrates all required mitigation measures, consistent with the Town of Killingly Inland Wetlands & Watercourses Regulations and the 2004 Connecticut Stormwater Quality Manual. These measures - as well as significant erosion and sediment control measures to be implemented during site preparation and construction - have been designed to protect existing earth resources, minimize the area of disturbed land, maximize infiltration, preserve water quality, and control drainage and runoff flowing onto, within and from the site.
Following construction of KEC, the final grading plan will be implemented and the installation of the permanent stormwater management system will be completed. The final stormwater management system will minimize the release and suspension of pollutants, effectively and safely remove water from the roadway and other critical areas, and properly treat stormwater before final discharge from the site. Further, consistent with Town of Killingly Inland Wetlands & Watercourses Regulations, KEC will not allow untreated surface drainage into any watercourse or inland wetland.
How will gas from the Algonquin pipeline reach the plant?
There is an existing Yankee Gas lateral from the Algonquin pipeline currently running just west of the project site. No new right-of-way will be developed. Yankee Gas has informed us that they will replace and upgrade the existing, decades-old lateral in order to provide enhanced reliability for all end users and supply natural gas to KEC. The plant lateral will run a short distance within Lake Road from the point it intersects the road to the plant site. It is not anticipated that this upgrade will impact existing landowners or abutters. The Algonquin pipeline is also undergoing its own modernization, ensuring that it has robust capacity and reliability to safely serve homes and businesses throughout Killingly, Connecticut and the region.
Will KEC utilize fracked natural gas?
KEC’s natural gas supply will come from the same interstate pipeline that provides natural gas to local homes and businesses. Some of this natural gas comes from shale fields that require hydraulic fracturing, while other sources typically include Canadian and Gulf Coast gas supplies or LNG imported through Boston Harbor. We believe that fracking should be conducted with the highest environmental integrity and oversight to eliminate methane emissions, protect local water supplies and reduce environmental impacts.
How much ultra-low sulfur distillate (ULSD) will KEC store on site?
Although KEC will have the capacity to store up to 1 million gallons of ULSD, in practice, KEC will store only a fraction of that during normal operations. ULSD is only used in the unlikely event that natural gas is temporarily unavailable and the independent grid operator requires KEC to operate to maintain system reliability. Based on historical precedents, we expect this would occur only for short periods on the order of once every 2-3 years. ULSD can be safely stored for years at a time if it is regularly agitated and mixed.
The 1-million-gallon storage capacity provides the region with an operational cushion – basically an insurance policy – to keep KEC running and providing power to the grid in times of gas supply interruptions.
Will you hire local people to build KEC and work at the plant?
Yes. NTE is committed to hiring local people, service providers and subcontractors during construction and operation of the facility.