Bay County’s J.C. Weadock coal-fired power plant may close

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAConsumers Energy is asking for permission from the state to close several coal-fired power plants in Michigan.

The electricity producer has submitted a bond proposal to the Michigan Public Service Commission, that would fund the closure and demolition of three plants: J.C. Weadock in Bay County, J.R. Whiting in Monroe County and B.C. Cobb in Muskegon.

The coal-fired plants would close in 2015 and be demolished in April 2016.

The 73-year-old Weadock Plant sit on a complex near Bay City along with the D.E. Karn Plant, which will remain open.

Consumers Energy cites stricter government regulations on emissions as the reason for their decision to seek closure of the plant.

The coal-fired Karn units will be updated with the necessary equipment to comply with the new regulations, a $420 million investment.

“These are regulations that would require environmental equipment on each of the units,” said Mary Kulis, a spokesperson for Consumers. “With Weadock units seven and eight we did not feel it was in the customer’s best interest to invest that amount of money into each one of those units, it would have just been cost prohibitive.”

Currently the Karn/Weadock Complex employs 370. Consumers Energy would not comment as to how many of those jobs would be eliminated by the closure.