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ATLANTA-Striving to own or control 35,000 megawatts in North America by 2005, locally based Mirant Corp. is buying a 640-megawatt, natural gas-fired power plant in Thomaston, GA and a 480-megawatt, gas-fired plant in New Port Richey, FL. from Houston-based El Paso Corp.

The prices and physical sizes of the properties and Mirant’s current total megawatts capacity weren’t disclosed in a company-prepared statement. But David Rozier, CEO of Mirant’s southern U.S. operations, calls the Georgia and Florida locations “two of the fastest-growing markets in the country.”

The deal still has to be approved by state and federal regulatory agencies. The Georgia plant uses four combustion turbines and has been operating since June 2000. The Florida plant uses three combustion turbines and is schedule to begin commercial operation in March 2002.

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