Under its conversion plan, the company is also looking to convert two coal-fired stations in Hopewell and Southampton County to use biomass as fuel, which are due to commence commercial operations before the end of 2013.

Dominion Generation CEO David A. Christian said that "Today marks another achievement guided by Dominion’s philosophy that balanced fuel diversity – from coal to natural gas to nuclear to renewables – leads to reasonable rates that best serve the needs and interests of customers and shareholders."

Following the conversion, the three plants are estimated to produce a total power of 51MW, providing electricity to about 12,500 households.

With its operational commencement, Altavista Power Station is expected to use 600,000 tons of biomass every year.

Dominion had earlier acquired the three plants in 2001.