'Aggressive' decay eats at power-plant scrubbers | The Columbus Dispatch

Full story: Columbus Dispatch

The new pollution scrubbers at AEP's Conesville plant show unusual signs of corrosion.

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mr optimist

Columbus, OH

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#23
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Nana wrote:
Why do we, the customers, have to pay again for these failing? We are not the problem. Go after the company that you bought them from, since they were supposed to last 25 years, and make them pay for the replacement of these scrubbers. Aren't we paying enough for your mistakes!
I dont know why you are so shocked. Its nothing new for a business to pass on a new expense to its customers. Every business in the world behaves this way.
CSD

Columbus, OH

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#24
Jul 11, 2011
 

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The EPA strikes again. Look closely at your electric bill next month.
DMR

Knoxville, TN

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#25
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Unrepentant Cynic wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't believe PUBLIC OWNED utilities quite qualify as Capitalism.
I am not sure what you mean. AEP is a private, but publicly traded company. Meaning they are clearly a shareholder owned for profit enterprise. I live part-time in East Tennessee,(I am from Columbus) which has power provided by the Tennessee Valley Authority, with distribution by local utility boards. In theory that is not-for-profit. The rate for power in East Tennessee is about the same as Columbus, and service is much worse.

I do not think the consumer should be on the hook for the problems with the scrubbers. It appears they were not designed properly or the design specifications were incorrect. The other possibility is that the materials used did not meet the specifications. This is also another possibility that AEP did not operate the scrubbers as designed. If the problem was design, materials or specifications those companies should be forced to pay, through court action if necessary. If the problem was how AEP operated the scrubbers that is an internal management and operations issue that AEP should be forced to eat, and take out of their profits.

If the material being removed is so corrosive within the scrubbers, what was it doing to our bodies when it was being sent out into the air we breath? I am not an extreme "tree-hugger" type, but I do think that is a very valid question.
tommy

Columbus, OH

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#26
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Of course the customer / rate payers are going to pay for this errosion. Who else is going to pay ?
Educated One

Columbus, OH

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#27
Jul 11, 2011
 

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These posts are hilarious! You all want clean air and cheap electricity but you don't want to pay for it. Huh? If you don't want your electric bill to go up - pound on the EPA who just passed more legislation last week that will cost Utility companies $800 MILLION annually - but supposedly will save Americans $280 BILLION ($1 million per person, I guess in their screwed up logic) due to "Gorebal Warming". EPA can pass rules without us voting on them - plus they have an $8.6 BILLION budget this year. Go after them - AEP and others simply make electricity that WE ALL USE each day. Its either badger the correct party, come up with your own way to make electricity cheaper (coal is the cheapest, by a long shot - that's where the capitalism comes into play - if it wasn't cheapest then AEP would be punching out more gas, wind and solar plants) or STOP USING electricity and you will not have a bill. PUCO forcing electric companies to buy solar (3.5 times more than coal), wind and renewable (which is 90% WOOD - a smog polluntant)- and you blame AEP and First Energy - who's nuts now?
Jeff

Columbus, OH

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#28
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Old School wrote:
So, what is the problem? Just raise the electric rate. We are used to it. Ten years ago I used to get an electric bill. Today it has a consumer charge, a distribution charge, a generation and transmiision charge, a rider A adjustment charge, and a load management charge. It is a joke!
Those charges were all included in your old bill...but electric companies are now required to break it out so customers can see each piece.
Dude

Columbus, OH

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#29
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Have they tried to using Scrubbing Bubbles? It's a pretty good product and much cheaper.

“American gvt is in the bag”

Since: Sep 10

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#30
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Well, on the bright side the scrubbers are made here in the USA and making them provides good jobs for folks.
Just sayin

Columbus, OH

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#31
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Kind of makes you wonder what you'd be breathing without the scrubbers in place - if it corrodes the metal, what's it do our lungs?

of course if I were in the Tea Bag Party, I'd be shouting that the scrubbers are a waste to the tax payers and just a part of over-regulation.
How Much

Columbus, OH

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#32
Jul 11, 2011
 
Oh, so how much is this going to cost the AEP customer in the form of rate hikes? You know AEP is not going to come up of pocket.
SAL

United States

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#33
Jul 11, 2011
 
I'm a little bothered by the "confidential" nature of the settlement AEP has made with a scrubber manufacturer. Utilities, by nature, are essentially a monopoly in a particular area (with few exceptions).

Shouldn't we, the consumers, have some sunshine laws about the nature of the mistake and what it's going to cost to fix it? After all, we'll be paying ...
Howard Beale

Columbus, OH

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#34
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Durn Electric Companies. They all should be banned.

As a side note-there is a Heat Advisory today. So be sure to crank up your air conditioning.
orboy

Nashville, TN

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#35
Jul 11, 2011
 
DMR wrote:
<quoted text>
"I live part-time in East Tennessee,(I am from Columbus) which has power provided by the Tennessee Valley Authority, with distribution by local utility boards. In theory that is not-for-profit. The rate for power in East Tennessee is about the same as Columbus, and service is much worse."

Just to correct one of your statements, in Tennessee the electricity is generated by TVA but it is not "provided" to the end user by TVA. Instead TVA has contracts with local utility districts who in turn provide it to you. When there is an interruption in your service it is due to a problem with the local utility distribution system. They own the distribution system at the user level. TVA owns the distribution system at the generator level. Even when TVA's huge Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant went off line due to tornado damage this past Spring, at no time was there an interruption in service to their customers i.e. the local utilities.
The location tag with your name says Knoxville. If so then your electric bill doesn't say TVA, it probably says Knoxville Utilites Board (KUB) or Lenoir City Utilities Board (LCUB).C
Bagman

Columbus, OH

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#36
Jul 11, 2011
 
It's from all those Chevy Volts they are selling. People need the electric to power their autos and it's pushing AEP to the limits.
Just sayin

Columbus, OH

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#37
Jul 11, 2011
 
The responsbilities lies with the manufacturer.... IF they warranted them for 25 years. If the 25 year statement by AEP was just blowing smoke, then unfortunately, we, the consumer, will have to pay.
Makes me Laugh

Iron Mountain, MI

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#38
Jul 11, 2011
 

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Consumer wrote:
How is that people feel so entitled to cheap energy? Did you know all the convenience of being suckle off the teet of fossil fuels for your computer, latte maker, cell phone, conditioned air, machine-washed clothing, and all your other unnecessary gadgets comes at a price? A price not just to AEP, but to the environment and to your future grandchildren who will no longer have any of these conveniences thanks to your unrestrained use of them today?
Who's fault do you think Peak Oil is? Is that one AEP's as well?
Are you blogging this on your smartphone while driving in your SUV too?
DMR

Knoxville, TN

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#39
Jul 11, 2011
 
orboy wrote:
<quoted text>
"I live part-time in East Tennessee,(I am from Columbus) which has power provided by the Tennessee Valley Authority, with distribution by local utility boards. In theory that is not-for-profit. The rate for power in East Tennessee is about the same as Columbus, and service is much worse."

Just to correct one of your statements, in Tennessee the electricity is generated by TVA but it is not "provided" to the end user by TVA. Instead TVA has contracts with local utility districts who in turn provide it to you. When there is an interruption in your service it is due to a problem with the local utility distribution system. They own the distribution system at the user level. TVA owns the distribution system at the generator level. Even when TVA's huge Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant went off line due to tornado damage this past Spring, at no time was there an interruption in service to their customers i.e. the local utilities. The location tag with your name says Knoxville. If so then your electric bill doesn't say TVA, it probably says Knoxville Utilites Board (KUB) or Lenoir City Utilities Board (LCUB).C
******

I am not sure what your point is, but I was correct. I said TVA generated the power and the distribution (meaning at the local level), is by the local utility board, which in my case is the Knox Utility Board. TVA is a Federally-owned corporation and the local utility boards are quasi-governmental agencies. The point was both TVA and the utility boards claim to be operated in a not-for-profit manner. This arrangement, in theory, should provide for more affordable power, but that is factually not the case. The retail power rate in Knoxville and the rate in Columbus (power from FOR profit Columbus & Southern\ AEP) are about the same, with much better customer service in Columbus.

I personally believe TVA has their own rather serious issues, which include being resistant to using contemporary pollution control equipment and facilities. We can discuss the long litigation track record TVA has, as they fought implementation of Federally required pollution control. Or we could talk about the problem TVA had a few years ago with the huge coal ash spill that contaminated a large portion of the Emory River and surrounding property. Could the rather considerable problem with air pollution in Knoxville be as a direct result of TVA and their lack of adequate pollution control? The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America has rated Knoxville, TN as America's allergy capital for some time now.

While I believe AEP may have other alternatives to passing through the costs related to the defective scrubbers to the rate-payers, TVA has not hesitated in passing through costs. A good example are the costs related to the coal ash spill, rate-payers have picked up the tab for that fiasco.
Consumer

Columbus, OH

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#40
Jul 11, 2011
 
Makes me Laugh wrote:
<quoted text>
Are you blogging this on your smartphone while driving in your SUV too?
No, my vehicle is a bicycle. I do own and use a computer. No air conditioning. Cold, short showers. Small house. Full yard edible garden. I buy used materials. I try to conserve what I can, and have solid plans for investing in more self-sufficient living in the future (I'm not doing everything at once, because I'm relatively young and relatively poor).

Does it threaten you that there are people out there preparing for a post-fossil fuel future? It should.
REALLY

Columbus, OH

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#41
Jul 11, 2011
 
Geez is that why my bill in May was $99 and June $149. It wasn't that hot out yet. Damn AEP for charging me for what their already to much profit should be taking care of.
Rocketman

Columbus, OH

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#42
Jul 11, 2011
 
FreeloaderFred wrote:
<quoted text>
Don't overlook the Bad Management charge!
Yeap, this is nothing new. I have worked in the pollution control industry for 30 years, and this sounds like Chloride corrosion to me, which happans only at certain temepertaures. Special alloys have been developed that hold up better than regular 304 stainless, but they can be very expensive. Like AL6-XN, which is a austenitic stainless developed for seawater and chlorids.

Another poster said something about the low bid got it. There probably right.

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