Category Archives for Utilities
Betsy Monseu’s recently published article in the Electricity Journal is freely available via the link below until September 22nd. We encourage everyone to check it out while it is still available.
Coal is under pressure in the United States, and not the natural kind of pressure involved in its creation from plant material. The pressure coal is under today is of a distinctly unnatural kind, shaped by an increasingly far-reaching and unbalanced regulatory agenda. The energy playing field continues to be tilted away from coal, a primary target of that agenda. Yet coal’s leading position as a critical fuel in the electricity marketplace continues. Though its share of that marketplace has generally been trending down over the past several years, coal remains the largest of any fuel source for electric generation. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) forecasts coal to retain the leading position in 2015 as well as over the longer term – including a 34 percent share in 2040.
“Coal – Evolving in the Energy Space” – Regulatory Spotlight – Clean Power Plan
With the release of EPA’s final Clean Power Plan just one week before Coal Market Strategies, the timing of our conference couldn’t be better. Meet your coal sector colleagues in Park City, Utah August 10-12, 2015 and benefit from up-to-the minute expert insight and analysis on these critical regulations and other important topics.
Don’t miss out! Register today
EPA’s carbon rules will be addressed by two speakers:
Allison Wood, Partner, Hunton and Williams – Legal issues
While coal has lost market share in the U.S. due to a mix of low gas prices and extreme, anti-coal regulation, Rob Nikolewski’s recent Watchdog.org article shows how coal use is growing rapidly around the world.
“Coal remained the fastest-growing fossil fuel in 2013 in both absolute and relative terms, accounting for approximately 30 percent of global primary energy consumption, second only to oil,” said an IEA report on coal markets, released in December.
Another IEA report, published in May, tracking the progress of clean energy showed low-priced coal was the fastest-growing fossil fuel in 2013 and that coal production worldwide outpaced the growth of oil and gas in 2012.
Thanks to America’s Power for putting together this video showing the differences in spending priorities between America’s elected officials and average Americans.
This kind of situation always reminds me of the “Jelly Donut” scene in the movie Full Metal Jacket. The scene shows how a lack of thought and self-control (one recruit stealing a jelly donut from the mess hall) leads to damaging outcomes for an entire platoon of marine recruits. In the same way, short-sighted and destructive energy policies coming from a small group of self-focused ideologues in DC and various state capitals are having profound negative effects on American taxpayers and electricity users (read: the rest of the country).
Interesting article on the Utility Dive website that discusses the likelihood of Elon Musk’s stationary storage tech disrupting utility generators.
The short version of the article’s primary argument is that most people won’t have the space or finances to power a home solely on solar panels and Tesla’s batteries. It is much easier and far less expensive to use the existing transmission and utility network to act as the battery.
A recent report by Management Information Services takes a look at the massive, statewide impacts of TVA’s planned closure of almost 3,900 MW of coal-fueled generation and expectations for further closures in the near future. The broad, widespread economic and social impacts on Tennessee’s people, their economy, industry, and productivity are frightening.
A short read of the report’s findings are that, as TVA drops coal from its generation fleet, the people of Tennessee will pay dearly.
- 20% higher electricity rates
- $7 billion reduction in gross state product
- $700 million in lost state and local government tax revenues
Interesting discussion on FOX Business channel. Tom Borelli and John Pippy, CEO of the Pennsylvania Coal Alliance discuss the “fundamental transformation” of American energy production.
I was recently interviewed by CNS News and asked for comment on the joint Sierra Club, Bloomberg media event (held on April 8th). In this event former NY mayor Michael Bloomberg and senior Sierra Club staffers, like CEO Michael Brune, exulted in their ability to pour tens of millions of dollars into misleading pressure campaigns, aimed at putting coal industry workers into unemployment lines. The gist of their recently expanded campaign is to spend Mr. Bloomberg’s $80 million, along with tens of millions of matching donations, “to shutter 50 percent of (coal) plants by 2017.”
Reading EENews.net’s January 26, 2015 interview with the CEO of the American Wind Energy Association is an eye-opener.
Despite repeated assurances that the U.S. wind industry is “vibrant” and competitive, Tom Kiernan flatly admits that without further extensions of decades worth of government subsidies, the wind industry still could not compete. In fact the industry would (in his words) “fall off a cliff” if the PTC were discontinued.