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AWEA's New Market Report Shows Modest Growth in Wind Generating Capacity for the U.S. in 2014

LCG, January 29, 2015-The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) yesterday released its U.S. Wind Industry Fourth Quarter 2014 Market Report. According to AWEA, the new wind power capacity installed last year is nearly five times greater than that installed in 2013. Although more capacity was installed in 2014 than 2013, the annual capacity addition is less than half the record of 13,000 MW that was installed in 2012.

GRDA Holds Groundbreaking Ceremony for Combined Cycle Project at Grand River Energy Center in Oklahoma

LCG, January 27, 2015-The Grand River Dam Authority (GRDA) held the groundbreaking ceremony on January 23 for its combined cycle project at the Grand River Energy Center in Chouteau, Oklahoma. The 495-MW, gas-fired generation project is estimated to cost $297 million and is scheduled for completion in early 2017.

Industry News

Agriculture Group Backs PG&E Hydro Plan; Independent Power Producers Don’t Like It

LCG, Aug. 11, 2000--Lobbyists began choosing sides yesterday as the California Public Utilities Commission began studying a proposal by Pacific Gas & Electric Co. to transfer its hydroelectric facilities in the state to a newly created unit of its parent holding company PG&E Corp.

The proposal, reported here yesterday, had the backing of The Utility Reform Network (TURN), theCoalition of California Utility Employees (CUE), Agricultural Energy Consumers Association(AECA), California Retailers Association, Sonoma County Water Agency, and Tuolumne UtilityDistrict.

Director Michael Boccadoro of the AECA called the settlement agreement "an historic opportunity to guarantee that these resources are operated in a reliable, environmentally sound manner and toprovide electric customers with significant economic benefits."

But the owners of independent power plants are against the proposal. Jan Smutny-Jones, executive director of the Independent Energy Producers Association, said "The best way to protect the environment and ratepayers, and to foster a truly competitive electric market is through an open, conditioned auction of these generating assets."

When PG&E first proposed transferring ownership of the hydro facilities to an affiliate, the plan was dismissed as self-serving and concerns over market power were raise. So, the utility proposed that it auction its plants, just like it did with its fossil-fueled power plants. That raised concerns by environmentalists and others who wondered what would happen to Californias rivers when competing generation companies ran the hydro turbines full time.

This time around, PG&E says its proposal should satisfy both environmentalists and free-market competitors.

As the sainted Noah Webster said in his 1802 American Spelling Book, "It makes a difference whose ox is gored."




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