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Monday, January 17, 2011

Coal to Natural Gas - Entergy gets it

Entergy cuts emissions

Entergy, the New Orleans-based utility giant, has hedged its bets: The company, which relies on coal for 20 percent of its electricity production, has cut its emissions by more than 20 percent in the past decade, said Brent Dorsey, director of corporate environmental programs at Entergy Services, which provides shared services, such as engineering, to the company's subsidiaries, operating in four states. And Entergy Louisiana intends to continue that effort by acquiring a 580-megawatt natural-gas power plant located near Eunice; closing is expected at the beginning of this year.

"Right now, we are just trying to understand it ourselves," Dorsey said. "We don't have a clear understanding from the EPA or Congress of how any of this is going to shake out."

Leonard, Entergy's chairman and CEO, supports climate change policies. While he has spoken in favor of using carbon capture and storage technologies on new or existing coal-fired power plants, which would prevent emissions from entering the atmosphere, many in the industry agree that is still at least a decade away from reality on a commercial scale.

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