Coldwater Board of Public Utilities is a member of Michigan South Central Power Agency (MSCPA). In 2014 MSCPA selected Clarke Energy to replace outdated diesel units with Jenbacher gas engines to help meet energy capacity needs for the city of Coldwater, Michigan. The project is co-located with a 100-acre greenhouse facility that has the capability to use the engine heat and CO2 for greenhouse fertilisation.
The operation mode of the plant is called upon when the utility market pricing deems it viable to generate their own electricity. The combined heat and power (CHP) plant utilised three Jenbacher JMS624 generator sets to provide13MW of electricity, enough to power the equivalent of 13,000 American homes. For maximum efficiency, the plant is engineered and designed to use captured heat and CO2, which has been implemented at other greenhouses across the globe.
“We are excited to begin construction on this new facility to help power the City of Coldwater and support our mission of providing cost-effective and reliable electric service to our customers. I look forward to this new natural gas-fuelled plant to start operating next year as we diversify our energy generation portfolio and provide a unique opportunity to support Michigan’s growth in greenhouse agriculture.”
Paul Beckhusen – Director Coldwater Board of Public Utilities
Michigan’s agricultural sector contributes $91.4 billion to the state economy, and more than 923,000 people are employed in the industry. To help maintain the agricultural industry’s success year-round, the new plant was commissioned before the fall season’s colder weather set in and when traditional vegetable growing becomes nearly impossible.