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AWEA Issues Fourth Quarter 2019 Market Report

LCG, February 7, 2020--The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) recently released its new U.S. Wind Industry Fourth Quarter 2019 Market Report. AWEA reports new wind turbine installations have added 5,476 MW of electric generating capacity during the fourth quarter, which results in 2019 installations totaling 9,143 MW. The total installations represent an increase over 2018, but the total for 2019 falls short of total annual installations for 2015 and 2016. In addition to new capacity additions, developers completed 2,500 MW of turbine repowerings for the year.

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Duke Energy Florida Announces New Solar Power Projects

LCG, January 29, 2020--Duke Energy Florida (DEF) Monday announced the locations of its two newest solar power plants that will provide a combined installed capacity of nearly 150 MW. DEF is investing an estimated $1 billion to construct or acquire a total of 700 MW of cost-effective solar power facilities from 2018 through 2022 in Florida, and planning for another 1,500 MW of solar generation through 2028.

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Industry News

Mirant Says 600 Megawatts Face Emissions Shutdown

LCG, July 23, 2001Mirant Corp., which operates the 2,022 megawatt Pittsburg power plant it purchased from Pacific Gas & Electric Co., warned again Friday that emissions regulations may force it to shut down four units having a combined capacity of 600 megawatts.

The result, combined with the opening two weeks ago of Calpine Corp.'s new 555 megawatt Pittsburg plant, would be a net loss to the state of 45 megawatts of much-needed generation in a city that regards power plants highly.

Mirant said it had told the state in April that it would be forced to cease operating parts of the Pittsburg plant if it could not secure emissions waivers, but the warning apparently went unnoticed by state officials.

"That's pretty big news if they're going to shut it down indefinitely," said Stephanie McCorkle, a spokeswoman with the California Independent System Operator. "I haven't heard this. Obviously, we wouldn't want to see any megawatts go away."

Even Steve Maviglio, the spokesman for Gov. Gray Davis, was surprised by the news. "It's significant, no doubt about it," he said. "We're going after every megawatt we can get. As a broad policy, as much power as we can keep on-line is beneficial until we can get new plants up and running."

Mirant had planned to tear out some of the units at Pittsburg and replace them with 530 megawatts of new generation, but tabled those plans earlier this year, citing California's "hostile" business climate as exemplified by the governor's vilification of independent power producers.

Now, the company has been ordered to cut nearly in half the average hourly nitrogen oxide emissions at Pittsburg and two other plants it owns in the San Francisco Bay Area. Faced with the massive investment in new emissions controls, coupled with the high operating costs of the old units, the company says it has little choice other than to shut down some generation.

"We're very serious about shutting them down" unless the company gets permission to exceed the emission limits, said Mark Gouveia, vice president and chief operating officer of Mirant's California division. "We're not going to violate the law to run them."

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