INDIANAPOLIS (March 24, 2009) - Indiana's leadership in homegrown clean energy production moved another step forward today when Governor Mitch Daniels signed into law a measure that will bring new generation substitute natural gas technology to the state, provide billions in savings to energy customers and create 1,000 construction and 500 permanent jobs in southern Indiana.
"Edwardsport establishes our unique leadership in producing electricity from clean coal. Rockport will be first in gas from clean coal. In concert, these two facilities will make Indiana the world's clean coal leader," said Daniels.
The governor announced in October 2006 that a substitute natural gas company intended to build a facility in southern Indiana that would produce pipeline quality substitute natural gas (SNG). The proposed plant, to be located in Rockport, would:
- Provide $2 billion in private investment to southern Indiana for the plant.
- Create billions in savings for energy customers
- Produce 1,000 construction jobs, 200 full-time jobs at the plant, and hundreds more coal mining and related jobs.
- Operate with 99 percent fewer pollutants than a traditional coal plant. Should national coal policy mandate the reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2), the SNG plant is designed to capture 90 percent of its CO2 emissions.
- For the last three years, Indiana has endeavored to take the lead in advanced coal development. The state already enjoys unique leadership in the generation of electricity using coal at the IGCC Wabash River power plant in Terre Haute and Duke Energy's construction of an advanced coal power plant in Edwardsport. A SNG plant in Indiana would lead in the modern production of gas from coal. Together this leadership will combine to make Indiana a world leader in preserving coal as a clean, vital portion of meeting energy demand.
- In 2006, Governor Daniels began discussions with a group about constructing a SNG facility in Indiana and to sell its product to Indiana utilities.
- In 2007, the governor supported tax credits for producers of SNG and the legislature passed investment tax credits in House Enrolled Act 1722.
- When potential accounting problems prevented the state's utilities from proceeding with binding contracts, the administration proposed a bill to provide the state with the authority to enter into long-term contracts for the purchase of SNG. As an essential step in securing the low-cost energy, economic development and environmental benefits of a SNG plant, Senate Enrolled Act 423 provides an innovative arrangement. No state dollars will be used to construct the plant, which will utilize homegrown energy resources.
- SEA 423 received overwhelming bipartisan support in the Senate (48-0) and House (90-8). It authorizes the Indiana Finance Authority (IFA), on behalf of the state, to enter into negotiations for 30-year contracts for the purchase and sale of SNG for delivery to Indiana customers. Daniels was joined at the bill signing by Senator Brandt Hershman (R-Monticello), Senator Jim Merritt, (R-Indianapolis), Representative Russ Stilwell (D-Boonville), and Representative Win Moses (D-Fort Wayne).
- Coal can be refined to produce SNG, essentially the same as the natural gas which is currently used to heat many Hoosier homes.
- Natural gas markets have proven very unstable and are subject to frequent fluctuation. Since Indiana coal prices have proved to be relatively affordable and more stable than natural gas, this technology will provide Hoosier ratepayers a more reliable and consistent costing gas source in the future.
- One plant could produce enough SNG to meet 15 percent to 20 percent of Indiana's current residential and commercial gas consumption.
- Savings for Hoosier utility customers could be $3 billion or more based on federal government estimates of future coal and natural gas prices. The project would produce 1,000 construction jobs, 200 full-time jobs, and hundreds more coal mining and related jobs together with the economic stimulus provided by over $2 billion in private investment in southern Indiana.
- SNG is produced with 99 percent fewer emissions than a traditional coal power plant.
Audio from today's bill signing can be found at this address: http://www.in.gov/gov/files/Audio/032409_SEA423.mp3
« Back to News Release List
Link to this event: