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ELP Volume 77 Issue 3

FERC orders wholesale power sales:

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) ordered El Paso Electric Co. (EPE) to sell wholesale power to the City of Las Cruces, N.M. EPE unsuccessfully contested Las Cruces` right to establish a municipal utility and will be required to provide power for up to one year, starting on July 1, which is Las Cruces` target date to take possession of the EPE distribution system. Las Cruces plans to operate the municipal utility with power provided by Southwestern Public Service Co.

Second online coal bid successful

FreeMarkets OnLine started the year by completing its second successful online coal bid for FirstEnergy, an Ohio-based energy services company. The first bid for FirstEnergy occurred in October, with this second round drawing "significantly more volume."

Duke aims for expanded Chilean presence

Duke Energy intends to extend its international reach by acquiring Endesa-Chile, which controls 10,000 MW of generating capacity in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Columbia and Peru. (see map) This acquisition of the largest electric generator in Latin America and the world`s largest private hydroelectric generator would establish Duke as a dominant player in the Latin American power market.

Industrials leverage size for lower rates

Industrial customers in 1997 paid the lowest prices for electricity in 17 years (4.1 cents per kWh in adjusted 1992 dollars), according to new Energy Information Administration (EIA) figures.

Pakistan IPPs stuck in limbo

Succumbing to international pressure, Pakistan`s government appears to be easing its grip on some independent power producers (IPPs). However, those involved in the dispute remain cautiously optimistic.

Duke/Fluor Daniel provides Maine merchant EPC:

Duke/Fluor Daniel, a partnership between Duke Energy Corp. and Fluor Daniel, contracted with Duke Energy Power Services to provide EPC services for a 520 MW, gas-fired merchant power plant in Penobscot County, Maine. Startup is scheduled for the summer of 2000.

ESPs vie for Calif. retail customers:

Three electric service providers are beginning campaigns to attract utility retail customers. ACN Energy Inc. sells primarily long-distance phone, paging and Internet services. Worldwide Energy plans to sell energy directly over the Internet, and Full Power Group is seeking a wholesale marketer exemption through FERC and will also sell over the Internet.

NRG Energy & KeySpan acquire N.Y. generation:

NRG Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Northern States Power Co., will pay $505 million to Consolidated Edison Company of New York for the Arthur Kill Generating Station (842 MW), Staten Island, N.Y., and the Astoria Gas Turbine Site (614 MW), Queens, N.Y. KeySpan will pay $597 million for the 1,753 MW Ravenswood Generating Station and the 415 MW Ravenswood Gas Turbines, both in Long Island City, Queens.

FPL Energy expands into Washington:

FPL Energy, a subsidiary of FPL Group Inc., will build, own and operate a 248 MW combined-cycle gas plant in Everett. FPL Energy purchased the right to build the plant from Northwest Power Enterprises Inc., which received full permitting for the project. Plans call for construction beginning in late 1999 or early 2000, with startup expected in 2001.

Hyperbole or revolution?

Distributed generation technologies have been the subject of considerable hype in recent years. Analyzing the market readiness and potential competitiveness of these new technologies suggests that the impact of distributed generation may be less in the short term (less than two years), but greater in the long term than most observers now expect.