Headquartered in Columbus, American Electric Power is one of the nation’s largest investor-owned electric utilities, serving nearly three million customers in seven states. About 500,000 of those customers live in West Virginia, where the company operates through its subsidiary, Appalachian Power Company. For several years after 1996 Appalachian Power Company and other AEP subsidiaries operated under the AEP name. Appalachian Power Company, often called Apco, has operated under its own name since 2004, reestablishing a familiar corporate identity. The company serves about half of West Virginia households, mostly in the southern counties.
West Virginia is home to AEP’s largest generating facility—the giant coal-fired John E. Amos Plant, located on the Kanawha River west of Charleston. When operating at full capacity, the 2.9-million-kilowatt Amos Plant uses 27,600 tons of West Virginia coal each day. The company has five other coal-fired generating stations in West Virginia. In addition it operates mining subsidiaries and a fleet of towboats and barges, based at Lakin, Mason County. In all, AEP employs more than 3,700 West Virginians.
American Electric Power and Allegheny Energy were partners in a project called the Potomac-Appalachian Transmission Highline (PATH). The companies planned to build a 280-mile high-voltage power line that would start near the John Amos Plant in Putnam County and cross a dozen West Virginia counties, as well as parts of Virginia and Maryland. The PATH project was put on hold while additional studies are done of the potential demand for power provided by the transmission line.
American Electric Power is a contributor to the West Virginia Encyclopedia.
This Article was written by James E. Casto
Last Revised on December 08, 2010