Power Plant Begins Testing Phase
FORT PIERCE, Fla., Feb. 22, 2008 — A power plant under construction in Midway Industrial Park is undergoing a short-term testing phase that is temporarily creating more sound and steam than will be normal when the plant begins regular operation.
As part of the start-up process, the power plant is blowing steam through its systems. When the steam is vented to the atmosphere, it creates a loud noise and a visible plume of water vapor. This testing phase is not representative of how the unit normally will operate.
The testing phase is expected to last until sometime Tuesday, assuming all systems check out as planned. Out of concern for local residences, it has been decided that testing will only continue from sunup to sundown.
When testing is complete, the power plant will operate within all permits required of St. Lucie County, including sound restrictions. Sound levels for the power plant—when measured from the nearest residences—should be between the sound of a quiet bedroom at night (approximately 30 decibels) and conversational speech (approximately 60 decibels).
Known as the Treasure Coast Energy Center, this natural gas fueled power plant incorporates advanced environmental control technologies that will make it one of the lowest emission and highest efficiency plants in Florida. Treasure Coast Energy Center is wholly owned by Florida Municipal Power Agency and will be operated under contract by Fort Pierce Utilities Authority.
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Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA) is a wholesale power company owned by 30 municipal electric utilities. FMPA provides economies of scale in power generation and related services to support community-owned electric utilities. The members of FMPA serve approximately 2 million Floridians. FMPA’s members include Alachua, Bartow, Blountstown, Bushnell, Chattahoochee, Clewiston, Fort Meade, Fort Pierce, Gainesville, Green Cove Springs, Havana, Homestead, Jacksonville Beach, Key West, Kissimmee, Lake Worth, Lakeland, Leesburg, Moore Haven, Mount Dora, New Smyrna Beach, Newberry, Ocala, Orlando, Quincy, St. Cloud, Starke, Vero Beach, Wauchula and Williston. Additional information is available on the Internet at www.fmpa.com.