Energy company to close coal plant in Fulton County, among others

A Texas-based energy production company says it’s closing four facilities in Illinois, including one in Fulton County, and in part blames existing regulations for doing so.

Vistra Energy says it is, in their words, retiring the coal-fired power plants, and that includes the Duck Creek Power Plant in Canton.

The firm blames the recently-revised Multi-Pollutant Standard Rule imposed by the Illinois Pollution Control Board which regulates the emissions power plants put out.  They say by closing the plant in Canton, along with other facilities in Havana, Hennepin, and Coffeen, the company will be under that standard, based on an analysis of the plants operated in the state.  Vistra, in a statement, also blames “unfavorable economic conditions.”

All told, three hundred people at the four plants will lose their jobs — 60 in Canton.

But, Vistra is calling on the Illinois Legislature to pass a measure so far not acted on that would allow to repurpose their plants into “solar and battery energy storage facilities” — similar to what they say they’ve done in Texas and California.

Then-Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill several years ago that some claimed was  a bailout for the company that operates nuclear power plants in Clinton, Illinois, and near the Quad Cities.

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