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New York Poised to Close Last Coal-fire Power Plant

LCG, December 4, 2019--The last operating coal-fired power plant in New York is moving toward closure shortly. Last month, Somerset Operating Company, a subsidiary of Riesling Power LLC, submitted a request to the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) to waive the state's required, 180-day notice to close the Somerset Station, allowing the facility to be retired on February 15, 2020. Closure is contingent on approvals by both NYSPSC and the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), which will evaluate if it will cause an adverse effect on grid reliability.

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Construction Commences on Enel’s Aurora Wind Farm in North Dakota

Enel Green Power North America, Inc. (“EGPNA”), the US renewable energy company of the Enel Group, has started construction of the 299-MW Aurora Wind Farm in North Dakota.

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Industry News

Pennsylvania Okays GPU-First Energy Merger

LCG, May 25, 2001-- Pennsylvania utility regulators Thursday gave conditional approval to aproposed merger of GPU Inc. with Ohio-based First Energy Corp., but postponed a decision on GPU's request to raise rates, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission said yesterday.

The commission voted 5-0 to approve the merger and then voted 4-1 to convene a "collaborative meeting" between the parties, to begin Tuesday and conclude no later than June 20. The commission said it would issue a final order by July 13, no matter what the collaboration produces.

The regulators attached conditions to their approval, Commissioner Terrance J. Fitzpatrick said. The combined company must agree to refrain from charging customers for costs associated with the deal or withdrawing transmission assets from the power grid that serves Pennsylvania.

The commission also required the companies to submit a detailed plan of anticipated job cuts within 60 day of the effective date of the merger to ensure that GPU's Pennsylvania employees do not pay the major price for "synergies" produced by the combination.

The new company formed by the merger will stretch from Ohio to the Jersey shore, will serve about 4.3 million customers and have annual revenue of around $12 billion.

GPU had sought a rate increase to offset the rising cost of wholesale power, even though it had agreed to a rate freeze through 2008 in earlier deregulation negotiations.

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