The IURC is beginning hearing this week to determine who should pay for the cost over-runs associated with the Edwardsport plant. Duke claimed in October 2011 that "the plant's high efficiency means that it can turn fuel into energy as a lower cost---the lowest cost on our system." Both of those statements are untrue according to the Sommer Energy report, which found the plant had only been able to convert one quarter of its fuel into electricity, well below the 36% promised by Duke. The report found that the plant's costs were 876% higher than if the power had been purchased on the market during the June 2013 to March 2014 period. Market cost within Duke's MISO was $33.5 per MWH, while Edwardsport's costs came in at $327.03 per MWH according to the report.
The report also disputes Duke's claim that Edwardsport would be "among the cleanest coal plants in the world" and would be capable of complying with new environmental rules. The report found that while the plant had the 9th lowest rate of SO2 emissions, the plant was only 86th in NOx emissions and ranked 323rd in CO2 emissions.
Citizens Action Coalition is urging Indiana regulators to make Duke bear all the additional costs outlined in the Sommer report at a hearing it's conducting this morning. According to the public interest group, the hearing will determine whether ratepayers will receive relief from the excessive costs or customers will be paying for them for years to come.