Daily Digest

FirstEnergy plants in jeopardy after FERC rejects coal, nuclear proposal

UTILITIES: Ohio-based American Electric Power forgot to notify the public about hearings on its latest case that will set rates and rider fees through 2024 for its customers, adding uncertainty to the proposal. (Midwest Energy News)

POLICY:
• Federal energy regulators reject a Department of Energy proposal that would have provided financial support to coal and nuclear plants, a plan backed by Ohio-based FirstEnergy and Murray Energy. (Columbus Dispatch)
• Grid operators now have 60 days to respond on whether any action should be taken at all, while FirstEnergy says some of its plants are still in jeopardy. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

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SOLAR:
• Advocates in Michigan say state regulators are moving too quickly to redesign net metering for solar customers, saying it hasn’t been determined whether such customers provide net benefits to the grid. (Midwest Energy News)
• A solar project is set to come online adjacent to a city’s wastewater treatment plant in northern Indiana. (Goshen News)
• A Catholic Charities facility in central Kansas plans to install a solar project and sell excess electricity back to its utility to offset its energy bill. (Salina Journal)

PIPELINES: An emergency responder with the U.S. Coast Guard says only about 40 percent recovery of potential spilled oil in the Straits of Mackinac is considered the best rate possible. (Great Lakes Now)

RENEWABLES: A solicitation from Xcel Energy’s Colorado subsidiary generated “incredible” record low prices for solar- and wind-plus-storage, with median bids of $36 per megawatt-hour and $21 per megawatt-hour, respectively. (Greentech Media)

COAL:
• The Supreme Court refuses to hear an appeal from coal giant Murray Energy, which sought to require the EPA to produce regular jobs reports on the coal industry. (The Hill)
• The latest outlook by federal energy regulators sees 20.6 gigawatts of coal being retired by 2020 with less than 2 gigawatts of coal coming online to replace it. (Utility Dive)

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OIL AND GAS: Natural gas demand soared to new records in Indiana following last week’s cold weather spell. (Indianapolis Star)

COMMENTARY:
• A former state and federal energy regulator from North Dakota says the state should adopt policies that increase the competitiveness among all of its energy sources rather than pit one against another. (Inforum)
• A solar company official in Missouri says Property Assessed Clean Energy financing is a “policy win-win that gets us beyond partisan politics.” (Springfield News-Leader)
• The CEO of Tradewind Energy says Nebraska is just beginning to tap into the “job-creating opportunity” of wind energy. (Omaha World-Herald)

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