Vistra Accelerates Pivot To Invest In Clean Energy

On September 29, Vistra announced a comprehensive plan to accelerate its transition to clean power generation sources and advance efforts to significantly reduce its carbon footprint.  The company launched Vistra Zero, a portfolio of zero-carbon power generation facilities.  In addition, the company committed to more ambitious long-term emissions reduction targets, released its first climate report, and announced its intention to retire all of its generation subsidiaries’ coal plants in Illinois and Ohio.

“The aggregate impact of these milestone initiatives is clear: Vistra’s commitment to our transformation to a low-to-no-carbon future is unequivocal and offers unique opportunities for growth and innovation,” said Curt Morgan, president and CEO of Vistra. “As evidenced by the actions we take and investments we make, Vistra is paving its way for a sustainable future – economically and environmentally – and we’ve been focused on transitioning our generation portfolio for the benefit of the environment, our customers, our communities, our people, and our shareholders.”

Morgan continued, “Importantly, Vistra’s leadership on these issues will not impact our core mission to provide consumers with reliable, affordable, and sustainable energy while lowering emissions. Electricity is an essential resource, and the demand for it will continue to grow as climate initiatives are implemented and the economy is further electrified. So, while the way we produce electricity is changing, our essential role in the process and core mission will not. Vistra is well-positioned to not only prove our resiliency during this important transformation to cleaner generation sources, but to lead the way.”

Assuming necessary advancements in technology and supportive market constructs and public policy, Vistra also announced its next phase of coal plant closures in Illinois and Ohio. The company expects to retire seven Luminant power plants, of which the company owns a combined capacity of more than 6,800 MW, between 2022 and 2027. By year-end 2022 • Edwards Power Plant, Bartonville, IL (MISO) – 585 MW previously announced By year-end 2025 or sooner should economic or other conditions dictate • Baldwin Power Plant, Baldwin, IL (MISO) – 1,185 MW • Joppa Power Plant, Joppa, IL (MISO) – 1,002 MW (plus 239 MW of gas-fueled combustion turbines). By year-end 2027 or sooner should economic or other conditions dictate • Kincaid Power Plant, Kincaid, IL (PJM) – 1,108 MW • Miami Fort Power Plant, North Bend, OH (PJM) – 1,020 MW • Newton Power Plant, Newton, IL (MISO) – 615 MW • Zimmer Power Plant, Moscow, OH (PJM) – 1,300 MW These plants, especially those operating in the irreparably dysfunctional MISO market, remain economically challenged. Today’s retirement announcements are also prompted by upcoming Environmental Protection Agency filing deadlines, which require either significant capital expenditures for compliance or retirement declarations.