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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

Judge Okays $3.3 Billion SoCal Ed Settlement

LCG, Oct. 8, 2001--U.S. District Judge Ronald S. W. Lew on Friday approved a $3.3 billion rescue plan for Southern California Edison Co. agreed to between the California Public Utilities Commission and the utility last Tuesday.

Under terms of the settlement, described more fully in last Wednesday's edition of EnergyOnline Daily News, SoCal Ed's current rates will remain in effect until at least 2003, the company will pay no dividends until at least 2004 and will use $300 million in cash it currently has on hand.

The utility said it hopes to pay off all its creditors by February of next year. Ted Craver, chief financial officer of SoCal Ed's parent holding company Edison International Inc., said "We're looking for a big bang in terms of paying everybody in the first quarter."

Edison International lawyer Steve Pickett praised the ruling, calling the settlement "a very critical first step necessary to create the cash flow to pay creditors," but added it was too early to say when the company would start paying its larger creditors.

On September 28, five big power producers demanded in a letter to SoCal Ed that the utility meet with them within two weeks to work out a payment plan, with the implication that they would drag the company into bankruptcy court if it failed to comply.

Reliant Energy Inc., Mirant Corp., Dynegy Inc., Enron Corp. and Puget Sound Energy Co. signed the letter and two of them, Reliant and Mirant, filed a joint objection with Judge Lew, saying the settlement agreement does not spell out exactly how they will get paid.

Patrick Dorinson, a spokesman for Mirant, said "We are disappointed in this rush to judgment when this complex secret agreement was made public just a few days ago. There is still no process established to ensure that Mirant's debts will be paid in full."

Reliant's Richard Wheatley remained skeptical. "Our hope is that Edison's commitment to pursue the fair and equitable resolution of the claims of its creditors is legitimate and will avert the need of creditors to pursue other remedies," he said.

California Gov. Gray Davis, who has found it impossible to get legislative backing for a so-called "rescue plan" for SoCal Ed, praised the decision. "My thanks goes to Judge Lew, and all the parties whose hard work protected thousands of jobs and ensured there will be no rate increase for Edison's customers," the governor said Friday.

Nor will there be a rate decrease. SoCal Ed customers will continue to pay for at least two years rates that include the huge temporary emergency increase pushed through earlier this year by Davis and his appointed regulators.

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