Cardinal Power Plant

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Cardinal Power Plant
Cardinal Station seen from Ohio Route 7.JPG
Cardinal Power Plant viewed from Ohio State Route 7
CountryUnited States
LocationWells Township, Jefferson County, near Brilliant, Ohio
Coordinates40°15′8″N 80°38′54″W / 40.25222°N 80.64833°W / 40.25222; -80.64833Coordinates: 40°15′8″N 80°38′54″W / 40.25222°N 80.64833°W / 40.25222; -80.64833
Commission dateUnits 1–2: 1967
Unit 3: 1977
Owner(s)AEP Generation Resources (Unit 1)
Buckeye Power (Units 2–3)
Operator(s)Buckeye Power
Thermal power station
Primary fuelCoal
Cooling sourceOhio River
Power generation
Nameplate capacity1,800 MW
External links
CommonsRelated media on Commons

Cardinal Power Plant is a 1.8-gigawatt (1,800 MW) coal power plant located south of Brilliant, Ohio in Jefferson County, Ohio. The power plant has three units. Cardinal is co-owned with Unit 1 owned by American Electric Power's (AEP) subsidiary, AEP Generation Resources. Units 2–3 are owned by Buckeye Power, a utility cooperative. It began operations in 1967.


Construction of Cardinal started in November 1963. The project was a joint venture of Ohio Power (a forerunner of AEP) and Buckeye Power. Buckeye Power obtained loans from the Rural Electric Administration and financing through Kuhn, Loeb & Co. and the Ohio Company.[1] Cardinal was built adjacent to Ohio Power's Tidd Plant. The plant is named after the State Bird of Ohio, the cardinal.[2] Units 1 and 2 began commercial generation in 1967 at a cost of $131 million.[3] Unit 3 began generation in 1977 after six years of construction at a cost of $220 million.[4][5] In 2017, AEP and Buckeye Power reached an agreement for Buckeye Power to operate all three units at Cardinal.[6]

Environmental mitigation[edit]

To further reduce nitrogen oxide (NO
) emissions, AEP and Buckeye Power announced in 2001 they would install selective catalytic reduction (SCR) systems to compliment their LO-NOx burners at Cardinal. The SCRs would decrease NO
emissions at the plant from 30% to 90%.[7] Between 2005–2010, flue-gas desulfurization (FGD) equipment were installed to all three units at Cardinal with Units 1 and 2 costing $300 million to construct. The FGD equipment would reduce sulfur dioxide (SO
) emissions by 98%.[8] A year after it was installed, inspectors found severe corrosion in its tank vessel. AEP negotiated a settlement with Black & Veatch, the contractor who installed the FGD equipment, to address the corrosion.[9] Instead of constructing a new chimney for Unit 3's FGD system, AEP retrofitted a cooling tower to release waste heat into the atmosphere.[10] AEP announced in 2015 that its Cardinal unit will be converted into a natural gas power plant by 2030 in order to comply with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards.[11] The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) approved of the conversion.[12]


During construction in June 1965, three workers were killed when a pump casing fell into a well.[13]

An explosion killed one worker and injured four in June 1984.[14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Woerdeman, Joe (March 28, 1964). "Cardinal Power Plant Will Be One of Largest". Dover Daily Reporter. p. 24. Retrieved April 7, 2018 – via
  2. ^ Brown, Jim (November 7, 1964). "New Power Plant Right on Schedule". The Steubenville Herald-Star. p. 11. Retrieved April 7, 2018 – via
  3. ^ "27 Ohio REA Cooperatives Acquire Generating Plant". Defiance Crescent-News. July 8, 1968. p. 10. Retrieved April 7, 2018 – via
  4. ^ "Unit Dedicated". The Steubenville Herald-Star. December 2, 1977. p. 1. Retrieved April 7, 2018 – via
  5. ^ "More Power". The Steubenville Herald-Star. March 4, 1975. p. 23. Retrieved April 7, 2018 – via
  6. ^ Higgins, Patrick (December 17, 2017). "Buckeye Power, AEP reach new operating agreement for Ohio plants". Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives. Retrieved April 6, 2018.
  7. ^ "AEP, Buckeye Power to construct emission control systems at Cardinal Plant". Power Engineering. August 2, 2001. Retrieved April 6, 2018.
  8. ^ "Scrubber system allows use of Ohio coal". The Times Reporter. January 16, 2008. Retrieved April 8, 2018 – via
  9. ^ Hunt, Spencer (July 11, 2011). "Failing Pollution Scrubbers - 'Aggressive' decay eats at power plants". The Columbus Dispatch. p. 1A. Retrieved June 26, 2018 – via
  10. ^ Hammer, Rachel (February 1, 2012). "Another first: AEP introduces flue gas venting technology in the U.S." AEP. Retrieved April 6, 2018.
  11. ^ "AEP Cardinal Plant in Brilliant Will Be Converted to Gas". Wheeling Intelligencer. December 16, 2015. Retrieved April 6, 2018.
  12. ^ Junkins, Casey (November 10, 2016). "Plan to Switch Cardinal Plant in Brilliant to Natural Gas is Approved". Wheeling Intelligencer. Retrieved April 6, 2018.
  13. ^ "3 Die, 3 Hurt in Plant Accident". The Steubenville Herald-Star. June 23, 1965. p. 1. Retrieved April 7, 2018 – via
  14. ^ "Cadiz man dies of blast injuries". The Plain Dealer. June 24, 1984. p. 25-A. Retrieved April 8, 2018 – via

External links[edit]