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EIA Publishes Regional Electricity Supply and Pricing Forecasts Using UPLAN Model

LCG, August 13, 2019--The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) announced that it is revising the presentation and modeling of its forecasts for electricity supply and market hub pricing to better reflect current electricity markets and system operations in the U.S. Beginning with the August 2019 Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), the new forecasting approach models electricity markets using the UPLAN production cost optimization software developed by LCG Consulting. EIA uses the solution results provided by this proprietary model to develop the STEO forecasts of monthly electricity generation, fuel consumption, and wholesale prices.

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Dominion Energy Virginia Pursues 500 MW of Renewable Projects

LCG, August 8, 2019--Dominion Energy Virginia announced Monday that it is seeking bids for up to 500 MW of renewable capacity in both 2021 and 2022 to increase its clean energy resources. Dominion Energy stated that it is committed to having 3,000 MW of solar and wind in operation or under development in Virginia by 2022. This near-term step is part of an ultimate company commitment to reduce carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050 across the 18 states it serves.

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Industry News

Big Stone II Coal Project Canceled

LCG, November 4, 2009--MDU Resources Group Inc. (MDU) announced Monday that the Big Stone II Project, a proposed coal-fired electric generating unit, and its associated transmission upgrades, will not be built. The proposed unit was sited adjacent to the existing, 450-MW Big Stone facility located near the Minnesota-South Dakota border.

Montana-Dakota Utilities (a subsidiary of MDU) President and Chief Executive Officer stated, "We will now look at other supply options that are reliable and cost-beneficial for our customers. We have plans to expand our wind production by 30 megawatts in 2010 and will review other generation options."

The Big Stone II project was estimated to cost about $1.6 billion, excluding transmission upgrades, and the operational date had been delayed to late 2015.

In June 2005, seven utilities announced their plan to develop a 630-MW unit that would be operational by 2011. In 2007, two of the utilities, Great River Energy and Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency, withdrew from the project, leaving five co-owners: Otter Tail Power Co., Central Minnesota Municipal Power Agency, Heartland Consumers Power District, Missouri River Energy Services and Montana-Dakota Utilities.

On January 22, 2009, the last day the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) could act on the permit, the EPA issued a written objection to the South Dakota Department of Natural Resources approval of the permit for the project that created a new hurdle for the project.

In September of this year, Otter Tail Power Company President and CEO stated that the broad economic downturn, coupled with a high level of uncertainty associated with proposed federal climate legislation and existing federal environmental regulation, have resulted in challenging credit and equity markets that make proceeding with Big Stone II at this time untenable for Otter Tail?s customers and shareholders.

On Monday, the remaining partners announced that the plant would not be built.
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