Edison Abandons Efforts to Restart Mohave Southern California Edison abandoned hopes of reopening the 1,580 MW coal-fired Mohave Generating Station outside Laughlin, Nevada, because of what it called "insurmountable" obstacles. Edison chiefly cited its inability to resolve water supply issues, as well as the likelihood of upcoming greenhouse gas emissions reduction requirements for California utilities. "We're not going to move forward as an [Edison] asset," said Gloria Quinn, company spokesperson, June 19. "We hope we can find a buyer for our share of the plant." The company will "substantially" reduce the current 308-person workforce at Mohave, said Gil Alexander, Edison spokesperson. The utility had retained staff in order to "mothball" the facility for an eventual restart. Edison ceased operating the plant January 1 to meet the terms of a consent decree with environmental groups requiring it to either shut down or install $1 billion in pollution-control equipment (Circuit, Jan. 7, 2006). Edison had operated the plant since 1971. It ran on pulverized coal from Peabody's Black Mesa Mine on Native American land in northeastern Arizona shipped through a 275-mile-long coal-slurry pipeline. In addition to the plant's air pollution problems, the Hopi Tribe opposed continued use of its local aquifer to supply water for the pipeline, noting that the water table was falling as a result. Edison had been negotiating to develop alternative sources of water, but the company also faced the expiration in 2026 of its right to use Colorado River water for plant cooling, noted Alexander. Given that, he said, the company would have had to restart Mohave no later than 2010 to amortize all the needed upgrades. Moreover, the company questioned whether it would make sense for a California utility to invest in refurbishing an aged coal plant in the face of expected state greenhouse gas emission reduction standards. "We've just run out of time," Alexander concluded. Meanwhile, plant co-owners the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power and Nevada Power signaled their intentions to sell or abandon the facility too. "Our focus is on decreasing our investments in coal power and offsetting them with energy efficiency and demand-side management as well as renewable energy," said Ron Deaton, LADWP general manager. "Withdrawing our investment in Mohave is one of the key factors that will help us to decrease our production of coal-fired energy." Roberto Denis, Sierra Pacific Resources vice-president of energy supply, stated, "The economic conditions most certainly cannot be resolved anytime in the foreseeable future." The company owns Nevada Power. Standard & Poor's said the closure would be "unfavorable" but "manageable" for the Salt River Project in Arizona, which had been receiving 4.2 percent of its power from the facility. Edison owns 56 percent of the plant, the Salt River Project 20 percent, Nevada Power 14 percent, and LADWP 10 percent. The owners will meet in the weeks ahead to decide what to do with the closed-down plant, said Alexander. Edison will propose putting the plant on the auction block but continuing to negotiate on the water supply issues, resolution of which would increase Mohave's value in any sale.