Daily Energy Insider: AEE: U.S. policy, Trump’s infrastructure plan must include nation’s power grid

Posted by Kim Riley on Mar 29, 2018

The Daily Energy Insider reports: Congress and the Trump administration should focus on the electric power system as a key element of infrastructure modernization to accelerate economic growth, according to just-released Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) policy recommendations.In mid-February, the president released his infrastructure plan, “Legislative Outline for Rebuilding Infrastructure in America,” which is designed to spur at least $1.5 trillion in new investment over a decade through $200 billion of federal funding and give Congress a roadmap for developing and passing “the most comprehensive infrastructure bill in our nation’s history,” according to the 53-page document.The plan targets improvements to traditional infrastructure such as roads, bridges and airports, as well as “other needs like drinking and wastewater systems, waterways, water resources, energy, rural infrastructure, public lands, veterans’ hospitals, and Brownfield and Superfund sites.”But what about the inclusion of the nation’s electric grid?The vast majority of the nation’s electricity needs are met through for-profit investor-owned utilities, according to President Donald Trump’s plan. However, what infrastructure the federal government does own and operate “would be more appropriately owned by state, local, or private entities” because “federal ownership of these assets can result in sub-optimal investment decisions and create risk for taxpayers.”
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Topics: AEE In The News

The Hill: Energy groups, greens slam utility’s plea for emergency rescue

Posted by Timothy Cama on Mar 29, 2018

The Hill reported: "Groups representing certain energy sources are joining with environmentalists and others to criticize FirstEnergy Corp.’s request that the Trump administration rescue its coal and nuclear power plants.
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Topics: AEE In The News

Reuters: FirstEnergy seeks emergency lifeline for U.S. nuclear, coal plants

Posted by Scott DiSavino, Valerie Volcovici on Mar 29, 2018

Reuters reported that today U.S. power company FirstEnergy Corp (FE.N) urged U.S. Dept. of Energy Secretary Rick Perry to employ rarely-used Section 202(c) emergency powers to order PJM Interconnection to negotiate a contract compensating owners of coal and nuclear plants for benefits such as reliability and jobs those units provide. Critics saw this as a move to protect unprofitable power plants.The story noted that PJM rejected the need for an emergency order to help FirstEnergy, and observed that coal and nuclear power plant operators have struggled with competition from low natural gas prices that have spurred utilities to retire dirtier coal plants. A 2:25 p.m. ET version of the piece included segments of AEE's reaction (this was replaced by API, Sierra Club quotes in a 5:20 p.m. update):Advanced Energy Economy, a trade group, called the move a “blatant appeal” by FirstEnergy for a corporate bailout.“This outrageous attempt to evade established market procedures is unprecedented,” said Malcolm Woolf, senior vice president of policy for AEE. See the earlier Reuters story here (w/AEE perspective), the updated Reuters piece here, a related RTO Insider "Update: FES Seeks Bankruptcy, DOE Emergency Order" story here, and AEE's complete statement here.See the earlier Reuters story here (w/AEE perspective), the updated Reuters piece here, a related RTO Insider "Update: FES Seeks Bankruptcy, DOE Emergency Order" story here, and AEE's complete statement here.
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Topics: AEE In The News

AEE Reacts to FirstEnergy Request for Emergency Support of Coal, Nuclear Plants

Posted by Advanced Energy Economy on Mar 29, 2018

WASHINGTON, March 29, 2018 — Today, national business group Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) issued the following reaction to news about FirstEnergy filing a formal request for federal emergency support of unprofitable coal and nuclear plants, under the rarely used U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) section 202(c) authority:“Advanced Energy Economy calls on Secretary Perry to reject FirstEnergy’s blatant appeal for a multi-billion dollar bailout of uneconomic and unnecessary power plants,” said Malcolm Woolf, senior vice president of policy for AEE, a national business organization. “This outrageous attempt to evade established market procedures is unprecedented. FirstEnergy is asking the Secretary of Energy to exercise authority that is reserved for an emergency threatening national security just to salvage power plants that are losing money for their owners and costing money for consumers. PJM currently has generating capacity well in excess of that needed to keep the lights on. FirstEnergy’s request attempts to short-circuit PJM’s well-established process for analyzing the reliability impacts of generation retirements, and ignores FERC's ruling earlier this year finding that no emergency exists that would justify providing special treatment to coal and nuclear power plants in our competitive electricity markets. We fully expect Secretary Perry to reject this application as an inappropriate use of his emergency powers, just as he did last year when Murray Energy asked him to keep coal plants open.”
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Topics: Press Releases

Five Ways Congress, Administration Can Modernize U.S. Energy Infrastructure

Posted by Advanced Energy Economy on Mar 29, 2018

 AEE Points Congress, Administration toward Modernizing U.S. Energy Infrastructure for Economic Growth 
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Topics: Press Releases

Roanoke Times (Opinion): Governor, appoint an SCC Commissioner – and point Virginia toward advanced energy

Posted by Advanced Energy Economy on Mar 28, 2018

The Roanoke Times published an opinion piece urging Va. Governor Northam to seize a unique opportunity to appoint the next SCC commissioner. The piece was authored by Harrison Godfrey Godfrey, Executive Director of Virginia Advanced Energy Economy, a coalition of businesses that seek to make the Commonwealth’s energy more secure, clean, and affordable (and state chapter of AEE). Here is an excerpt — click link to read the entire piece.Gov. Ralph Northam has an opportunity — through a rare vacancy on the State Corporation Commission (SCC) — to unleash innovation and accelerate economic growth in the commonwealth. We urge him to seize it.
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Topics: AEE In The News

CleanTechnica: Microsoft Signs “Largest” U.S. PPA for 315 Megawatts of Virginia Solar Farm

Posted by Joshua Hill on Mar 23, 2018

CleanTechnica reported on AEE member Microsoft's announcement that it had signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for 315 megawatts (MW) of energy from the 500 MW Pleinmont I and II solar farms in Virginia, calling it the “single largest corporate purchase of solar energy ever in the United States.”The solar energy PPA is being contracted with sPower to secure 315 MW of the energy generated by sPower's Pleinmont I and II solar farms to help power Microsoft's local data centers and office buildings. The Pleinmont I and II deal also marks Microsoft’s second solar deal in Virginia following a March 2016 agreement to secure Renewable Energy Certificates from Dominion Energy’s 20-MW Remington Solar Farm.
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Topics: AEE In The News

Virginia AEE lauds Microsoft’s investment in 500 MW Solar Project

Posted by Advanced Energy Economy on Mar 22, 2018

 
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Topics: Press Releases

Energy Central: FERC has extended deadline for comments on grid resiliency

Posted by Rakesh Sharma on Mar 21, 2018

Energy Central reported that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission responded to a request by 11 major energy industry groups, including Advanced Energy Economy, asking for a 30-day extension on the April 9 filing deadline in the agency's proceeding on grid resilience.
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Topics: AEE In The News

SmartGrid Today Podcast: AEE's Waggoner on Utility Earnings in a Service-Oriented World

Posted by Sam Spencer on Mar 7, 2018

SmartGrid Today podcast host Sam Spencer interviewed Danny Waggoner, senior manager of regulatory transformation at Advanced Energy Economy, who was also  lead author of a report on regulatory models that AEE believes could help foster the modernization of the electric utility industry. The report, "Utility Earnings in a Service-Oriented World" is available for free download here.
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Topics: AEE In The News

Grid Geeks: Storage Takes Over the Universe

Posted by Allison Clements on Mar 4, 2018

Podcast host Allison Clements interviews AEE's Jeff Dennis and Kiran Kumaraswamy of Fluence (an AEE member) about recent actions by FERC that open up wholesale markets to energy storage and consideration of other advanced energy technologies that provide ancillary services. Good overview of issues plus they dig into technical underpinnings.
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Topics: AEE In The News

AEE Applauds Virginia Utility Regulation Bill

Posted by Advanced Energy Economy on Mar 1, 2018

AEE Applauds Passage of Legislation to Expand Investment in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency in Virginia
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Topics: Press Releases

Advanced Energy Leadership Award Goes to U.S. Rep. Costello

Posted by Advanced Energy Economy on Mar 1, 2018

 
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Topics: Press Releases