news by location
Utility trends don’t bode very well for fossil-fuel-fired electricity
Two huge interstate electricity companies—Vista Energy and Dominion Energy—are at the forefront of an industry retooling that favors cheap renewable forms of generation over natural gas and coal. The trend embodies “a bearish view of fossil-fuel energy” as solar and wind farms gain market share nationally, “curbing orders for new plants and forcing the closure of old ones.”
Editorial: China Is Becoming the New Texas
“Consider this a friendly warning that things can change quickly,” says a Texas editorial that acknowledges the fast pace of change across the global energy economy and that sees Asia as the epicenter of rapid advances in solar and wind. “Decades may seem like a long time — until you imagine trying to convince 1980s coal country that it needed to worry about natural gas.”
Coal company with mines in several states is in financial peril
An analysis of Colorado-based Westmoreland Coal shows that it is in deep financial peril, a situation that may affect communities in Montana, New Mexico, Ohio, and Wyoming as the company’s customer base dries up. “The cost inherent in coal-fired power are moving (utilities) away from coal," says the study’s author.
Texas Town Faces Transition in January Plant Closure
With the closure of the Sandow Coal Power Plant a few weeks off, the east-central town of Rockdale is trying to come to grips with the loss of hundreds of jobs. The plant is one of three being shuttered by Luminant, the biggest power producer in Texas. “Whatever happens, everyone agrees Rockdale needs to attract more industry and employers.”
In Texas Plant Closings, a National Trend Persists
Two imminent power-plant closings in Texas spell difficulties for a coal mine in Wyoming that depends on those plants for more than its demand. The closures of the Monticello and Big Brown plants by utility company Luminant will add to an expected shutdown in 2018 nationally of more than 13,600 megawatts of coal-fired power, compared with 7,600 in 2017.