RWE Delays Start of German Coal Plant After Acids Enter Boiler

RWE AG, Germany’s second-biggest utility, delayed the start of a hard coal plant in Germany by three months after chemicals accidentally entered a boiler.

RWE will start selling power from its 764-megawatt Hamm-D coal plant March 1, 2014, instead of Nov. 30 this year, Lothar Lambertz, a company spokesman, said by phone from Essen today.

“Despite highest precautionary measures and intense preparation, some chemicals, including hydrochloric acid, got into the boiler of block D in Hamm,” Lambertz said. “We can’t say anything on how much this delay is going to cost us.”

RWE is planning two blocks at its site in Hamm. The other block, unit E, is also scheduled to start producing power in March 2014, Lambertz said. RWE owns 77 percent of the Hamm power plant, according to its website.

Dortmunder Energie- und Wasserversorgung GmbH, a regional utility that owns 5.6 percent in the two blocks, expects annual losses of as much as 16 million euros ($21.7 million) from granting power deliveries at a fixed price from Hamm-D, Martina Sprotte, a spokeswoman, said by phone from Dortmund today.

Handelsblatt reported the Hamm-D delay yesterday.

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