NRC Issues Subsequent License Renewals for First Time to Nuclear Reactors in Florida

LCG, December 11, 2019--The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff recently approved Florida Power & Light's (FPL's) application for an additional 20 years of operation for Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Units 3 and 4. This is the first time the NRC has issued renewed licenses authorizing reactor operation from 60 to 80 years. The subsequent (or second) license renewals (SLRs) for Turkey Point Unit 3 and Unit 4 now expire on July 19, 2052 and April 10, 2053, respectively.

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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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Industry News

Minnesota Power Moves Forward with Biomass Initiative

LCG, April 18, 2007--Minnesota Power announced earlier this week its plans to develop biomass resources as a key element to providing clean, renewable, "carbon-friendly" electricity to serve its customers. The plans are part of its "Biomass Initiative," a long-term energy plan that includes the evaluation and screening of a variety of biomass projects. Primary biomass feedstocks include wood waste and forestry residues.

The screening process included a number of factors, and those feasible projects with the best economics have now advanced to become finalists in the process. The short list includes the construction of 50-MW biomass fueled unit at Minnesota Power's Laskin Energy Center in Hoyt Lakes, and consuming biomass fuel at existing Minnesota Power facilities; and developing projects at customer sites which provide process improvements and generation additions.

Minnesota Power will work with other entities to further define the top projects, including the development of the biomass supply plan necessary to support the fuel requirements of the projects. The final plans will be submitted by Minnesota Power to the State as part of the company's Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) later this year.

In February, Minnesota Governor Pawlenty signed legislation that requires electric utilities, including municipal power entities, to use renewable energy to supply 25% of retail electric sales to customers in Minnesota by the year 2025. The new law includes renewable supply goals for most utilities of 7% by 2010, 12% by 2012, 17% by 2016 and 20% by 2020. The largest electric utility, Xcel Energy Inc., has a higher goal of 30% by 2020.

Renewable supply resources include wind, hydroelectric, solar, biomass and hydrogen. Wind energy is specifically targeted to account for one quarter of the renewable supplies utilized.

The new law includes provisions to develop a renewable energy credit trading system that would allow utilities to trade in order to achieve renewable goals. Financial penalties may be assessed if goals are not met.

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