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Federal Government uses UPLAN model to examine price volatility in ERCOT

LCG, October 11, 2022--The U.S. Energy Information Administration, or EIA, released its latest supplement to the Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO) in the Texas market, assessing various possible scenarios using LCG’s UPLAN NPM model, with a special focus on the effects on wholesale power prices and market conditions.

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Michigan Governor Supports Reopening Palisades Nuclear Facility

LCG, September 16, 2022--The Governor of Michigan last week sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in support of Holtec International’s application for a federal grant under the Civil Nuclear Credit (CNC) program to save the Palisades Nuclear Facility in Southwest Michigan. The federal grant could result in restarting the baseload, carbon-free, nuclear power plant.

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Industry News

Aluminum Production Slashed as Power Prices Soar

LCG, Dec. 27, 2000Shortages and high prices in a region where electric power was once plentiful and cheap have forced Goldendale Aluminum Co. to slash by three-quarters production at a primary aluminum smelter in Washington state, according to the plant's owners.

The big Norwegian industrial firm Norsk Hydro said in a statement yesterday that its Goldendale, Wash. smelter operated by subsidiary Golden Northwest Aluminum would reduce production from about 105,000 to just 27,000 metric tons for the next nine months. A metric ton is 10 percent greater than a conventional 2,000-pound ton.

The Pacific Northwest has heretofore enjoyed an abundance of hydroelectric power, but a booming high-tech economy coupled with low rainfall has pointed up the need for increased sources of electricity. At the same time, the hydro facilities are under pressure from environmentalists to cut back production in order to protect certain fish species. There is even talk of demolishing four large dams on the Snake River.

Bonneville Power Administration, the federal agency responsible for operating the government-owned hydroelectric facilities and for much of the transmission grid in the Northwest, recently cut back on power allocations to industries and at the same time raised the price of power.

Norsk Hydro said it would return much of its power allocation to Bonneville at a below market price. The cutback at Goldendale will "free-up funds to protect the viability of Goldendale through investment in power generation capacity," the company said in a statement.

The company intends to keep its work force intact for the nine months, it said, paying "costs of continued employment, wages and benefits of the smelter's employees."

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