Governor, officials break ground on new Southeast Texas Entergy plant

Published 2:44 pm Monday, April 24, 2023

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BRIDGE CITY — Gov. Greg Abbott joined approximately 200 business executives, state and local officials as well as community leaders from multiple counties Monday to celebrate the groundbreaking of a power plant that will combine natural gas and hydrogen to produce enough electricity for 230,000 homes.

Entergy Texas’ Orange County Advanced Power Station received approval from the Public Utility Commission of Texas in November, with construction currently underway.

On Monday, a ceremony was hosted on the property site to formerly announce the intentions and subsequent benefits of the plant.

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“It’s no secret that Southeast Texas is a region on the rise,” said Eli Viamontes, president and CEO of Entergy Texas. “From residential growth to industrial growth, the Gulf Coast remains a popular destination for families and businesses. The addition of the Orange County Advanced Power Station is an essential piece of Entergy Texas work to meeting that growth.”

Viamontes said OCAPS will be equipped with the most fuel-efficient technology on the planet to expand efficiency.

“That increased efficiency directly benefits our customers in the form of fuel savings,” he said. “These fuel cost savings are substantial with over $100 million in savings expected in the first full year of operations. And over its life, we expect (OCAPS) to provide more than a billion dollars in net benefits to our customers.”

Entergy Texas serves 27 counties.

Abbott noted Entergy customers are not on the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) grid, which was the center of a deadly power outage during the winter storms of 2021, ultimately leading to more than 200 deaths.

“Texas needs more electric power,” Abbott said. “It’s very simple. And Entergy is providing it with a true Texas-sized investment.”

OCAPS, he said, is one of six recently announced projects geared at electricity.

“These announcements add up to more than 4,600 new megawatts of…power in Texas,” Abbott said. “That’s going to be enough electricity to power more than 900,000 additional homes.”

In addition, he said Texas has ranked No. 1 in exports for 21 consecutive years with Southeast Texas playing a large part in that number.

“I want to thank Entergy for knowing what a good, strategic investment this is in Southeast Texas,” he said.

Abbott presented Entergy with a proclamation from the State of Texas.

Drew Marsh, chairman and CEO of Entergy Corporation, spoke on the benefits of Southeast Texas.

“There are so many advantages to being right here on the coast in Southeast Texas,” he said. “There is access to national and global markets. There are supportive communities for investment. There is available and skilled workforce.”

OCAPS, which is located just outside of Bridge City, is expected to be in service by mid-2026.

The construction of OCAPS will create nearly $1.8 billion in total economic activity in Southeast Texas, and result in more than 7,000 direct and indirect jobs. 

consortium of Mitsubishi Power Americas, Inc., Sargent & Lundy and The Industrial Company will provide Entergy Texas with engineering, procurement and construction services.