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Cleaner Coal Technology takes a Big Step Forward

Frederick, MD - September 29, 2005 Bechtel Power and GE Energy, allies in the effort to promote environmentally advanced energy production, will perform early engineering on a new “cleaner coal” power plant that American Electric Power (AEP) hopes to build in Meigs County, Ohio.

The 629-megawatt plant would be the first U.S. power facility in nearly a decade to use Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle technology. GE's IGCC system converts coal into a cleaner burning fuel, which is then used in a gas turbine combined-cycle system to generate electricity. The process generates lower sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, mercury, and particulate matter emissions than a traditional pulverized coal plant. It also uses less water.

GE and Bechtel joined forces last year to develop a standard commercial offering for IGCC projects, making it easier for utilities to develop new projects.

“The focus of the IGCC alliance between GE and Bechtel is to establish successful IGCC ventures for power generation customers in the United States, establish a leadership position in the production of cleaner power from coal and petroleum coke, and bring value to a wide range of customers,” said Scott Ogilvie, president of Bechtel Power.

The first phase of engineering for the new AEP plant is expected to take 10 to 12 months. If GE Energy is awarded the contract for the next phase, it would supply the IGCC technology for the plant while Bechtel would perform engineering, procurement and construction.

GE Energy has been a leading supplier of gas turbines for IGCC applications since the Cool Water Power Plant, the United States' first IGCC demonstration project, came online in 1984, Bechtel, one of the world's leading engineering, procurement, and construction companies, has significant experience in the design and construction of all forms of power generation facilities, including IGCC plants. GE Energy has worked with Bechtel on a number of IGCC projects, including Cool Water.

AEP is one of the country's largest utilities, with more than 5 million customers linked to an 11-state electricity transmission and distribution grid. The company is based in Columbus, Ohio.