Springerville power station

From Global Energy Monitor

Springerville power station is a 1,765.8-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station operated by the Tucson Electric Power Company near Springerville, Arizona.


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Plant Data


Springerville Units 3 and 4 were the subject of a lawsuit brought by Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest on behalf of Western Resource Advocates and Grand Canyon Trust. After a series of court decisions and hearing, a settlement was reached that allowed construction of the plants in exchange for lowered emissions and investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency programs.[5]

On May 6, 2008, the Sierra Club sent a maximum achievable control technology (MACT) notice letter to Tucson Electric requiring the company to install technology to control mercury and other hazardous air pollutant emissions from the proposed units. By July 2008, Unit 3 was operational.[6]

On December 31, 2008, Unit 4 suffered a fire estimated to have caused $10 to $12 million in damage. While some construction has been rescheduled, the plant is projected to begin commercial production by the end of the year. It will begin burning oil in September 2009 and switch to burning coal soon after.[7]

On March 18, 2010, the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality issued a revised, draft Title V operating permit for the Springerville Station, which incorporates mercury emission limits for the project. Springerville power station Unit 4 began operating in December 2009.[6]

Unit 4 Energy Production and Consumer Costs

Springerville power station's Unit 4 burns approximately 60 rail cars' worth of coal daily. The coal is mined in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming. In the spring of 2009, customers will begin paying about $6 more on their monthly bills. The costs are due to the fact that the plant's construction overshot its cost by $350 million. Pending climate legislation could also make the plant's operations more expensive if it is forced to install pollution reduction equipment. As a result, popular support for the plant has waned.[8]

Retirement discussions

Tucson Electric Power's 2020 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) contained a proposal to ramp down and eventually retire Springerville Units 1 and 2 by 2027 and 2032 respectively. The IRP also outlined the company's plans to develop new wind and solar generating capacity which it hoped would account for more than 40% of its power production in 2030, more than 60% by 2033, and more than 70% by 2035.[9]

Citizen Groups



  1. "TEP Integrated Resource Plan" tep.com accessed June 2020
  2. "Annual report 2018, page 32" tristategt.org, accessed June 2020
  3. "Springerville Generating Station," Springerville Generating Station, accessed July 14, 2019
  4. "EIA 923 March 2020" EIA 923 2020.
  5. Air Quality and Clean Energy: Springerville Power Plant, Grand Canyon Trust, accessed January 2008.
  6. 6.0 6.1 "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed March 2010.
  7. "New SRP generating unit to open despite fire", Ryan Randazzo, The Arizona Republic, March 3, 2009.
  8. "Arizona's last new coal plant?" Ryan Randazzo, The Arizona Republic, March 18, 2010.
  9. Kelsey Misbrener, "Tucson Electric Power plan says solar + wind will provide more than 40% of power by 2030" Solar Power World, Jun. 26, 2020.

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