Kansas City Power & Light Company will retire all three units of the coal-fueled Sibley Power Plant by the end of 2018.
In all, KCP&L plans to retire five coal-fired units by that time – Sibley plus two at its plant at Montrose Lake – and one natural gas unit at Lake Road Station in St. Joseph by the end of 2019. The company had converted from coal to natural gas at Lake Road in 2016.
Terry Bassham, president and CEO of KCP&L and Great Plains Energy, said that after considering many options retiring the six units at three sites, “most effective way” to meet customer energy needs and move into a more sustainable future.
“When these power plants started operation more than 50 years ago, coal was the primary means of producing energy,” Bassham said in a news release. “Today, as part of our diverse portfolio, we have cleaner ways to generate the energy our customers need.”
KCP&L says it anticipates more than 20 percent of his total generating capacity needs will be met by renewable energy.
The company said it would make every reasonable effort to find jobs within the company for affected employees. A spokesperson said that, per policy, the company could not release how many people are employed at the Sibley plant.
KCP&L announced in January 2015 that it would cease burning coal at the three plants and would decide later whether to retire the Montrose and Sibley units or convert to an alternative fuel source. Since then, factors such as lower electricity prices, plant age, expected environmental costs and lack of new capacity needs led the company to retire the six generating units.
Sibley's 48-megawatt unit began service in 1960. A 51 MW unit started in 1962 and the 364 MW unit started in 1969.