Allegheny Energy Supply Company (a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corporation) has closed the coal-ash landfill for the former R. Paul Smith coal-fired power plant, located in West Virginia, based on the recent ruling by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection that environmental monitoring at the landfill could end.
The coal-ash had been used in cement manufacturing for the past 20 years. Mon Power, (another subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corporation) plans to build a 6MW Solar Facility at the 26-acre site as part of their plan to construct five utility-scale solar facilities in West Virginia, totaling 50 MW of renewable generation.
The R. Paul Smith coal-fired power plant was located in Maryland, between the Potomac River and the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal – north of Lock 44, but its coal-ash landfill was across the Potomac River in West Virginia, which explains why the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection was involved. The 116 MW power plant was commissioned in 1927 and decommissioned in 2012. Efforts to close the landfill began in 2015. The landfill’s closure was the conclusion of a 20-year effort to reuse the plant’s coal-ash byproduct in cement manufacturing, harvesting 3.1 million tons of the coal-ash.