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

California 'Windfall' Power Profit Tax Bill Stalls

LCG, Sept. 12, 2001--A bill that would punish independent power producers by imposing a tax on "windfall" profits from wholesale power sale stalled in the California Assembly yesterday, failing to muster the 41 votes needed to pass it to the state Senate.

Assemblywoman Ellen Corbett, a Northern California Democrat, said her measure would set a $60 per megawatt-hour base price for electricity, and if independent power producers charged more they would be taxed on the difference. "The base rate is 100 percent above what prices were in January. That's plenty of room for a profit," she said.

Corbett's bill would return the money to consumers -- and consumers alone -- through a two-day sales tax holiday on most household goods.Assemblyman Bill Campbell, a Southern California Republican, said the bill creates more problems than it solves and Republican Minority Leader Dave Cox said the bill would encourage businesses to leave California.

Some lawmakers also questioned whether the state could tax a municipal district if they charged more than the $60 per megawatt base price. Corbett promised to work out those details if the bill was sent to the Senate.

An audit of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power showed that the nation's largest municipal utility charged California an average of $292 per megawatt-hour for power during the worst of the electricity crisis earlier this year.

Democrat Assemblywoman Hannah-Beth Jackson of Santa Barbara supported the bill and said it wasn't aimed at most businesses, only the ones "that want to stomp on the California economy."

The truth of the matter is, no one charged more for power than someone else was willing to pay.

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