Dominion offers new agreement for Wise County plant

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The attorney general’s office and the State Corporation Commission staff are recommending approval of Dominion Virginia Power’s proposed coal-fired power plant in Wise County.

Under an agreement filed between them and the utility, however, the Richmond-based power company would be able to receive less profit than it originally sought.

The proposal means that Dominion would not be allowed to earn extra profit under state incentives to build clean-coal plants. Under the proposal, the utility would receive a 12.12 percent profit on its investment rather than the 13.75 percent it proposed.

The agreement says that although the proposed plant falls under the definition of a clean-coal plant, it can not prove it will be able to capture its carbon emissions. Carbon sequestration technology is not expected to be commercially available until 2018.

Environmentalists say the agreement shows that Dominion used its “clean-coal” description of the plant for publicity to gain support for the plant.

The company says the $1.6 billion Virginia Hybrid Energy Center is necessary to meet Virginia’s growing demand for power. It will require approval by the SCC and the state Department of Environmental Quality.

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