Iberdrola, through its engineering subsidiary, has been awarded the construction of the combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) plant in Salem (Massachusetts) with an installed capacity of 674 MW. The project was awarded by Footprint Power, a U.S. company specialising developing initiatives to replace older and less efficient coal- and oil-fired plants with more modern power generation facilities. Located some 30 km from Boston (Massachusetts), the Salem CCGT plant will be fuelled by natural gas and will be able to supply electricity to 280,000 people. The entire facility will be housed in a state-of-the-art, environmentally-friendly building designed by the U.S. firm Cookfox Architects.

The plant to be built by Iberdrola Ingeniería will use the most advanced technology and will replace the existing Salem Harbor Station coal-fired plant, built 63 years ago and which is being decommissioned on the very same site. The commissioning of the Salem combined cycle power plant will enable cleaner electric power to be generated in the area, thereby contributing to reduced CO2 emissions.

Another of the benefits of this replacement project will be the freeing-up of space, as the new CCGT will occupy less than a third of the current site. The remaining area will be used for green and leisure areas. In addition, the former coal bunker wharf has already been used as a berth for cruise ships and there are many future plans for this site.

Iberdrola’s subsidiary will be in charge of all project phases including engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning of the facility. Furthermore it will also undertake landscaping work once construction has been completed. The construction of this energy infrastructure will contribute to promote economic and social development in the area, as some 600 jobs will be created during construction work with several local companies expected to benefit. As one of the keys to its implementation in the area, Iberdrola Ingeniería is firmly committed to hiring professionals from the communities around the plant.

In addition, the Salem combined cycle power plant will be the first high-performance facility in the world to incorporate GE’s Flex-Efficiency design. This modern system, which seeks to redefine operational flexibility standards, includes enhanced gas turbines, steam turbines, generators and plant control systems that maximise the energy resources of power generation plants.