Electricity

Judges side with FERC, greens on transmission reforms

A federal appeals court on Friday unanimously upheld the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's 2011 reform of regional electricity transmission planning and cost allocation rules, which environmental groups hailed as a victory in their campaign to get more renewable generation onto the grid.

Utilities and trade groups, however, criticized the rejection of legal challenges to the commission's Order 1000 by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. They opposed the order on grounds that consumers could be forced to pay for transmission lines they don't use, and that state and local control over the grid will be weakened.

Severe winter weather to blame for highest PJM prices for 6 years

Source: 
Platts

Electricity prices in the first half of the year for PJM Interconnection were the highest since 2008, but that was because of very frigid winter weather that’s unlikely to crop up again soon, according to a report from the transmission group’s independent monitor, which noted that congestion costs more than trebled compared to the period a year earlier, Platts reports.

Grid issues provide massive windfall for traders

Source: 
The New York Times

Traders like DC Energy reap in profits from congestion contracts, designed to help power companies offset higher costs in periods of high demand on the grid, but targeted by investment companies primed to cash in on the opportunities, The New York Times reports.

Loan payment delayed for Puerto Rico power company

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rico's financially struggling public power company won a big reprieve Thursday, announcing that creditors agreed to postpone payment of $671 million worth of bank loans until next year.

It was the third time this year that creditors allowed the state-owned Electric Power Authority, known as PREPA, to delay payments amid growing speculation that it might default on its roughly $9 billion debt.

The power company owes a Scotiabank consortium $525 million and Citigroup $146 million and now has until March 31 to make those payments. The banks will continue to collect interest on those amounts.

FERC well positioned to monitor carbon rule impact on grid: LaFleur

Source: 
E&E

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is in a good position to monitor the impact of the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed carbon rule on the country’s electricity grid and no changes are needed, chair Cheryl LaFleur told E&E in an interview, although she said further along in the process FERC could issue a white paper outlining its role.

Power glut to blame as RWE to shut 3 more plants in Germany

Source: 
The Wall Street Journal

Subsidized renewable energy has grown so much in Germany that there’s an electricity glut, which is why RWE – trying to shore up shrinking profits -- says it will shut down three more power plants on top of the 10 already set for closure, and CEO Peter Terium is warning about future threats to the country’s energy security, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Thursday debt deadline looms for power authority in Puerto Rico

Source: 
The Wall Street Journal

If the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, known as Prepa, can’t negotiate another extension for payments with lenders like Citigroup, it faces having to restructure a much larger amount of debt, some $9 billion worth, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Utilities cautious in face of uncertain future: Report

Source: 
Platts

Faced with flat demand, a move away from coal- and nuclear-generated power, the growth of distributed generation and uncertainty about the final form of emissions regulations, utilities are holding off on making major decisions about investments, according to an analysis by research firm Black & Veatch, Platts reports.

Noranda still waiting for Missouri ruling on its power rates

Source: 
Platts

The Missouri Public Service Commission was due to rule on its request for lower electricity rates last week, but Noranda Aluminum, which reported a smaller loss than a year ago in the second quarter, is still waiting for word, CEO Layle “Kip” Smith told analysts in an earnings call Monday, Platts reports.

Bankrupt Energy Future looks to pay millions more in executive bonuses

Source: 
The Wall Street Journal

Bankruptcy court filings – required under Chapter 11 laws and set for review next month – indicate that Energy Future Holdings is seeking to pay $18 million or more in bonuses to executives in 2014, The Wall Street Journal reports.

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