Ohio State University Power Station

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The Ohio State University McCracken Power Plant is a coal-fired steam plant and chilled water plant located just west of the OSU campus in Columbus, Ohio. It supplies about 85 percent of the non-electric heat to campus.[1]

History

The original OSU power plant was completed in September 1918. It was later enlarged four times (1923, 1929, 1959, 1962). The structure was named to honor OSU chief engineer and superintendent William C. McCracken in 1960, a year after his death at age 96.

In 2001, the McCracken Power Plant switched from natural gas to coal and oil. Natural gas costs were skyrocketing at the time, and the university moved back to coal to save money. In 2007 it switched back to natural gas to meet environmental regulations.

In 2012, Ohio State University signed a 20-year purchase agreement with a northwestern Ohio wind farm - Blue Creek Wind Farm in Van Wert and Paulding counties - to provide enough energy to meet as much as 25 percent of the Columbus campus’ electrical needs.[2]

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