Impacts of COVID-19 Virus on Electricity Demand

LCG, March 27, 2020 -- Jeremy Platt, an energy scientist, Palo Alto has made some early analysis of impact of COVID -19 on electricity demand using the grid operators data published by LCG. Data from several areas of the country offer early and near real-time views of impacts of the economic slowdown due to evolving regional and statewide coronavirus mitigation strategies.

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California PUC Targets Doubling Renewable Energy by 2030

LCG, March 27, 2020--The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) yesterday unanimously approved a new emissions target for its electric sector that would double California's clean energy capacity through 2030 and effectively block new natural gas-fired electric generating facilities.

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Industry News

PNM Says Kansas Demands Could Scotch Western Resources Deal

LCG, July 27, 2001--Demands by the Kansas Corporation Commission for rate cuts could scotch plans by Public Service Co. of New Mexico to acquire two utilities from Western Resources Inc., the companies said yesterday.

Last year, PNM agreed to pay $1.5 billion in an all-stock deal to purchase two regulated utility operations of Western Resources, Kansas Power & Light Co. and Kansas Gas & Electric Co. The two utilities serve more than 630,000 customers in the Sunflower State.

Though Western Resources had asked Kansas regulators for a $150 million rate increase, the KCC voted instead to raise those rates by $22 million.

Also, last Friday, the KCC found that Western Resources' plan to restructure by splitting off its regulated utility business from its unregulated businesses would harm its electric operations.

David Wittig, chief executive of Western Resources, was hopeful. "We believe that we understand the KCC's concerns with the current transaction and are hopeful that we can reach agreement with PNM on alternative terms that will permit the transaction to move forward and provide the benefits that we believe the combination will bring to our customers and shareholders," he said.

But Jeff Sterba, his counterpart at PNM was less so. "PNM doesn't believe that the split-off and other transactions envisioned in our merger agreement with Western Resources can be accomplished on the agreed terms if the KCC's orders remain in effect," he fretted.

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