The Montgomery County Power Station, which will come up at the existing Lewis Creek site, is scheduled to be brought into operations in mid-2021.

Upon its commissioning, the gas-fired power plant will be able to meet the power consumption needs of more than 455,000 customers of Entergy across 27 counties in Southeast Texas.

Entergy Texas president and CEO Sallie Rainer said: “Southeast Texas is growing, and Entergy Texas needs to invest now to power that growth.

“By providing reliable, affordable power, we can meet our customers’ needs today, while laying the foundation for future growth across our region.”

The Montgomery County Power Station will be equipped with two gas turbine generation units that will be delivered by Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems (MHPS) under a contract signed last month. The gas turbines will be the air-cooled versions of the MHPS G-Series.

The power plant will be integrated with an emissions control technology that will lower emissions compared to the existing fleet of Entergy. Furthermore, the Montgomery County Power Station is projected to generate savings of $1.7bn in the next 30 years for Entergy Texas customers.

According to Entergy, the power plant will give immediate benefits to customers through lower energy costs. The fuel savings as a result will pay off the construction costs within 10 years of operation, which is one third of the power plant’s lifecycle.

The power plant’s engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning (EPCC) is being handled by McDermott International under a contract worth $500-700m, which was awarded in 2017.

McDermott North, Central and South America senior vice president Richard Heo said: “Today’s groundbreaking ceremony marks an important milestone on this power project for Entergy Texas.

“This project demonstrates McDermott’s continued commitment to the power industry. We are proud to support our customers, like Entergy, who build power generation stations that provide clean, reliable and affordable power in the communities in which they operate.”