Missouri PSC Approves Grain Belt Express HVDC Transmission Project

LCG, March 22, 2019--The Missouri Public Service Commission (PSC) approved a request filed by Grain Belt Express Clean Line LLC for a certificate of convenience and necessity (CCN) to construct, own, operate, control, manage and maintain a high-voltage, direct-current (HVDC) transmission line to move power east from wind farms in western Kansas to load centers in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana.

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FPL Targets 1,490 MW of Solar Capacity for New Community Solar Program

LCG, March 15, 2019--Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) Wednesday filed a proposal with the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) for a new community solar program, FPL SolarTogether. Pending PSC approval, FPL plans to install 1,490-MW of capacity at 20 new solar power plants across FPL's service territory to meet anticipated customer enrollment in the program.

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Industry News

China's Remote Regions Receive Solar Funding

LCG, Feb. 26, 2002--A pilot project in China's Hebei province is one of many solar power projects in Western China to receive part of 2 billion yuan ($241.5 million) in funding from China's High-tech Department of the State Development Planning Commission over a period up to three years.

The Hebei project, expected to be producing power in June, will include 3 megawatts of polycrystalline silicon solar cells, and equipment to convert the solar radiation into electricity.

Qi Chengyuan, who heads the commission, said that the funding will be provided in sunny areas that are not connected to China's transmission network. They include the Tibet Autonomous Region, the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region and Shaanxi Province, among others. According to Qi, "the fund will serve as a governmental allowance for local residents, most of whom are not rich, to buy solar energy equipment to generate electricity for daily use." Overall solar capacity is now approximately 15 megawatts nationally.

Large-scale production of solar equipment, such as that of Yingli New Resources Co Ltd, allows domestic producers to sell its output at lower prices than foreign producers, Qi said. Yingli has annual output capacity of 26 megawatts.

Qi noted, "such projects can win infrastructure construction loans from banks at low interest. And those of a scale larger than 3 million kilowatts will even see 2 percent of their loan interests waived." He stated that "whenever possible," solar power should have access to existing transmission infrastructure.
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