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Lena, Rapides Parish
Plant Type: Power
Fuel Source: Natural Gas, Coal, Petroleum Coke, Biomass
Rated Capacity: 1,604 megawatts

This series of plants sits on 6,000 acres and uses man-made Rodemacher Lake as a cooling source for the plant's generating units. The lake covers about half of the site.

To reduce carbon emissions and protect the environment, contractors planted 65,000 hardwood seedlings on about 120 acres of the plant site in 2001. The Brame Energy Center also is working with Charah Solutions, to find alternative uses for its ash, a by-product of coal-generated electricity. Currently, the ash is being sold as a cement additive, which makes concrete stronger and more durable. The Brame Energy Center burns 1.75-2.1 million tons of coal a year.

Nesbitt Unit 1, completed in 1975, is 100 percent owned by Cleco Power. It is fueled by natural gas and can produce 440 megawatts.

Rodemacher Unit 2, completed in 1982, is jointly owned by Cleco Power, Louisiana Energy and Power Authority and Lafayette Utilities System. Cleco Power owns 30 percent or 157 megawatts of the 523-megawatt generating unit. Rodemacher Unit 2 is fueled predominantly by coal from Wyoming.

Madison Unit 3, 100 percent owned by Cleco Power, is the company's largest generating unit and was completed in 2010. It is among the cleanest solid-fuel units of its kind in the nation. The unit is key to Cleco Power's strategy to be self-sufficient in its power supply and increase fuel flexibility. It can use multiple solid fuels including biomass, coal and petroleum coke, a byproduct of the oil refining industry, to generate up to 641 net megawatts. The plant uses circulating fluidized-bed technology.

In addition to the potential of lowering carbon emissions, the technology also addresses regulated emissions. Because the boiler firing temperature is approximately 1600° F, nitrogen oxides (NOx) are lower than normal. In addition, Cleco installed emission control systems to the boiler that further reduce NOx. Sulfur dioxide emissions are extremely low by adding limestone with the fuel in the boiler and scrubbers as a post-combustion control.

The unit uses approximately 1.5 million tons of petroleum coke or coal and 500,000 tons of limestone each year. Petcoke, coal and limestone are barged to an off-loading facility located on the Red River. The materials are then moved to the unit by a 1.5-mile conveyor.