Iberdrola Renewables boosts Klamath Cogen Plant efficiency and megawatts, wins another safety award
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July 16, 2009
KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — Iberdrola Renewables has completed the first phase of a major upgrade to the Klamath Cogeneration Plant, and at the same time has been recognized by Oregon officials for its excellent safety record.
The multi-year plant upgrade will increase the plant's generating capacity by 30 megawatts and improve fuel efficiency. The 2009 upgrade brought in 175 additional workers to the plant's staff of 22 for six weeks.
The eight-year-old plant is already recognized as one of the most fuel efficient in the West. The upgrades will further reduce the rate of CO2 emissions at base load by almost 6%, making the plant even more environmentally friendly. Iberdrola Renewables uses the now 536-megawatt Klamath Cogen and the adjacent 100 MW Klamath Peakers to supply power to its utility customers throughout the Northwest and California as well as process steam to a nearby lumber products manufacturer.
"The upgrade helps make sure we can supply a cost-competitive energy supply to our customers while the safety award shows Iberdrola Renewables' commitment to making sure everybody goes home safe," said Peter van Alderwerelt, senior vice president, Iberdrola Renewables. "Plant staff has maintained a zero-lost-time accident rate since 2000 when the first employee was hired."
On June 17, Oregon Occupational Safety and Heath Administration (OHSA) awarded the Klamath staff a Milestone Award for surpassing 200,000 person hours worked without a recordable accident. OSHA representative Mark Hurliman presented the award. OSHA's Hurliman said that only 35 companies in his 10 years have reached this milestone. The reward actually had to be re-designed before being presented since it normally only recognizes 100,000 hours.
Top Iberdrola Renewables executives recognized plant staff in Klamath Falls with an Excellence in Safety Award, one of the company's highest achievements.
In addition to these latest awards, the Klamath plant earned five consecutive Oregon OSHA SHARP Certification Awards, and graduated from the program. This recognition by OSHA distinguishes the safety culture and track record at Klamath as essentially 'best in class.' Of the 90,000 businesses in Oregon, only 126 of them have achieved SHARP certification. The plant is now applying for OSHA VPP certification, the highest level possible, as safety and operational excellence go hand in hand.
Klamath is an important part of Iberdrola Renewables' integrated portfolio that includes more than 3,000 MW of wind, 55 MW of biomass and more than 80 BCF of gas storage throughout the US and Canada.
When commissioned in 2001, Klamath became the cleanest fossil fuel power plant ever constructed in the US in terms of greenhouse gas emissions. It was a model for Oregon legislation that now governs the carbon dioxide emissions of new fossil-fuel power plants built in the state.
The plant won Power Magazine's Power Plant Award for 2001 when it came online and won then-Oregon Governor Kitzhaber's 2000 Community and Economic Development award. Klamath Cogeneration won "Best of the Best" honors for operations and maintenance at the Combined Cycle Journal's 2008 Best Practices Awards, as well as awards in two other categories — Safety and Environmental Stewardship.
In addition to greenhouse gas mitigation, Klamath uses up to 3 million gallons per day of treated municipal wastewater provided by the City of Klamath Falls to meet 100 percent of its cooling needs, helping the City reduce its discharges into the Klamath River by about two million gallons per day. The cogeneration process itself is environmentally responsible. The Klamath plant creates two useful forms of energy—electricity and process steam—from a single fuel source.
About Iberdrola Renewables:
Total North American workforce (as of May 31, 2009): 837
Klamath Falls: 22