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Planned Ohio State Power Plant Gets Regulatory Approval, Despite Fracking Worries

By District Energy posted 09-21-2020 09:29


The Columbus Dispatch


A combined heat and power plant at Ohio State University can move forward, following approval by the Ohio Power Siting Board this week.

The board approved the facility, which the university has said will be the primary source of electricity and heating for its Columbus campus, Thursday afternoon.

The facility is part of a $278 million project that also will include district heating and cooling loop infrastructure and a new pedestrian bridge across the Olentangy River, according to Ohio State.

Ohio State has said the facility is the “cornerstone” of its energy plan and private energy partnership, and is needed to support its new inpatient hospital and buildings that will make up Ohio State’s West Campus innovation district.

“We are pleased with the Ohio Power Siting Board’s decision,” Ohio State spokesman Dan Hedman said in a written statement. “This is positive news as the Combined Heat and Power Plant will support the campus core and is expected to cut carbon emissions by more than 30% in its first full year of operations.”

The facility is planned for a corner of John H. Herrick Drive and Vernon L. Tharp Street near the Galbreath Equine Center. The plant would generate electricity with combustion turbines and then use exhaust heat to produce steam and heat water, which would be used to heat campus buildings.

The university will work to finalize a project timeline and share details as they become available, Hedman said.

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