By: Ed Malley, Vice President and RE Power Program Manager
Last week I participated as a panelist at the POWER-GEN International Conference in Orlando, Florida. As part of the Mega Session on Coal Plant Retirements, my fellow speakers and I discussed the challenges and opportunities power companies face when deciding to decommission obsolete generating sites.
My presentation focused on Preparing a Useful Power Plant Demolition and Remediation RFP. You can view the full slide show here, but I would like to emphasize three key takeaways:
Pre-demolition surveys are a critical part of the RFP process. Surveys properly document the value of your assets and the scope of work for abatement, decommissioning, demolition, remediation and restoration. Pre-demolition surveys form the basis of the technical plans and specifications of the work to be done. They help you to provide a document and guide that both the utility and contractors can rely on, so the work can be done with minimal change and conflict.
A pre-demolition survey should address:
- Asbestos and hazardous/regulated materials
- Geotechnical and structural conditions
- Asset values, including real estate
- Utilities requiring relocation, such as power, fuel, water intakes & discharges
- Permit requirements
- Environmental site assessments
When preparing to remediate a site, it is important to understand what the future use of that site will be. A Phase I environmental assessment will help you discover the conditions on site and prepare to clean them up appropriately based on the intended future use. For example, there may be less restrictive cleanup standards if the site is to be reused for industrial or commercial purposes, versus residential reuse.
Typical remediation issues include:
- Fuel and coal combustion residues
- Metals and PCBs
- Possible asbestos in land management units
- Legacy Manufactured Gas Plant issues
Of course, it is always of the utmost importance to address safety first when preparing to decommission or demolish a plant. Your site should have not only a site specific health and safety plan, but also a site specific emergency response plan. An RFP should include provisions that protect workers, the public and the property in areas including:
- Asbestos and other hazardous materials
- Energized fuel and utility systems
- Weakened or corroded structures
- Working from heights
If you attended POWER-GEN, what sessions did you find most valuable? Are you planning a power plant retirement? If so, what are your best practices for success? Please leave a comment below to share your stories and ideas with us.
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