Xcel postpones plans

Following plans to build the Midwest’s largest biomass power plant in Ashland, US, utility holding company Xcel Energy has now put these plans on hold.

The decision was made after the cost of the project turned out to be 37% higher than initial estimations. It was first thought that the total cost would be $58.1 million (€44.57 million). However, following further work it was found that it would in fact cost $79.5 million.

Over 100 jobs would have been created had the project gone ahead.

‘Although we are disappointed with the outcome, we have gained considerable value from the evaluation that we have completed,’ Mike Swenson, president and chief executive of NSP-Wisconsin, a unit of Xcel Energy, commented. ‘The engineering studies will advance gasifier technologies for utility applications and our efforts to procure sustainable biomass supplies have resulted in a model than can be adopted in future projects.’

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