Seeking capacity, Maryland wants a $500 million plant built

June 2012, Vol. 67 No. 6

In April, the Maryland Public Service Commission directed four state utilities to sign long-term agreements with a developer to build a 661 MW natural gas fired plant in Waldorf.

The agency said it ordered the $500-million project because the regional grid operator, PJM Interconnection, could not deliver the 650 MW to 700 MW of new generation needed in the state by 2015, although the total is less than the 1,500 MW originally sought. But the grid operator opposed the state’s plan for independent generation, claiming it would suppress prices and result in only subsidized projects being constructed. Regulators, who say no new generation has been built in the state since 2003, are concerned about regional power shortfalls as coal-fired plants are retired.