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

Court Rules Out PG&E Legal Maneuvers

LCG, Nov. 20, 2003--Utility Pacific Gas & Electric Co., which reached a proposed settlement with regulators over its bankruptcy reorganization in June, was told by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday that a threatened series of corporate asset transfers to new companies would not be allowed.

The moves were part of the utility's own reorganization plan before the settlement was reached with regulators. PG&E indicated that if any changes were made to the terms of the settlement, it would act on the legally novel strategy it had developed, and which a lower court decision would have allowed. According to a statement by California's Attorney General Bill Lockyer's spokesman Tom Dresslar, "To the extent that PG&E threatened to go back to its original plan ... the 9th Circuit today took that arrow out of its quiver."

Members of the California Public Utilities Commission, who will decide next month what action to take on the draft settlement in question, indicated that the ruling would cause them to review possible changes to the settlement. Geoffrey Brown, one of the commissioners, said the ruling would allow him to consider changes that might be less favorable to PG&E. The deal allows PG&E to pay down its debts using above-cost rates, while earning a guaranteed after-tax profit of 11.2 percent over many years.

Consumer groups have said that the deal amounts to unfair subsidization, while some business groups believe that the high cost of electricity in Northern California imposes a drag on the region's economy.
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