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DEP issues permits to begin construction on Berks power plant

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Artist rendering of Birdsboro power plant, which is expected to begin commercial operations in 2019. (Contributed)
Artist rendering of Birdsboro power plant, which is expected to begin commercial operations in 2019. (Contributed)

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection agency has given its go-ahead for construction to begin on a $600 million natural gas electrical generation facility in Birdsboro.

The 450 mega-watt facility, run by Birdsboro Power LLC, is planned for the site of the former Birdsboro Army Tank Foundry/Armorcast facility.

According to the DEP, permits cover the construction of the main power generation facility, an electric transmission line to convey generated power, a pipeline to supply the facility with water and a pipeline to convey natural gas to the facility, which is also regulated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

The facility will generate energy using a combustion turbine and a heat recovery steam generator that will provide steam to drive a steam turbine generator.

Birdsboro Power is owned by Ares Management LP, a global alternative asset management group based in Los Angeles.

The Birdsboro project’s developer, EmberClear Corp., an energy company based in Houston, also built the gas-fired power plant in Good Spring, Schuylkill County, in 2012.

The plant, which is scheduled to begin commercial operations in 2019, is expected to create 300 construction jobs and 25 permanent jobs, according to EmberClear’s website.

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Stacy Wescoe

Stacy Wescoe

Writer and online editor Stacy Wescoe has her finger on the pulse of the business community in the Greater Lehigh Valley and keeps you up-to-date with technology and trends, plus what coworkers and competitors are talking about around the water cooler — and on social media. She can be reached at stacyw@lvb.com or 610-807-9619, ext. 4104. Follow her on Twitter at @morestacy and on Facebook. Circle Stacy Wescoe on .

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