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New York Poised to Close Last Coal-fire Power Plant

LCG, December 4, 2019--The last operating coal-fired power plant in New York is moving toward closure shortly. Last month, Somerset Operating Company, a subsidiary of Riesling Power LLC, submitted a request to the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) to waive the state's required, 180-day notice to close the Somerset Station, allowing the facility to be retired on February 15, 2020. Closure is contingent on approvals by both NYSPSC and the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), which will evaluate if it will cause an adverse effect on grid reliability.

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Construction Commences on Enel’s Aurora Wind Farm in North Dakota

Enel Green Power North America, Inc. (“EGPNA”), the US renewable energy company of the Enel Group, has started construction of the 299-MW Aurora Wind Farm in North Dakota.

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Industry News

Texas Market Experiences Potentially Costly Scheduling

LCG, Mar. 1, 2002--A top official at the Texas Public Utility Commission said that an initial investigation has identified six "qualified scheduling entities" that appear to have made at least $1 million in profits each based on a feature of the Texas market.

Parviz Adib, who is in charge of the commission's market oversight unit, said "our conclusion is that intentional overscheduling took place, and that harm was done to the market." The PUC continues to collect data, and will issue its final conclusions later this year.

Qualified scheduling entities act as middlemen between power producers and the Texas transmission grid. They submit forecasts of generation that is expected from their utility or marketer clients, and the amount of demand that is likely from end-users served by them. In Texas, the scheduling entities can be paid if the amount of energy consumed is below their forecast expectations, or charged if power produced falls short of their forecasts. Overall, the forecast errors are expected to cancel one another out.

During times that power needs are high, the value of having additional grid capacity available is relatively higher, and therefore, any unpexected surplus of capacity due to overscheduling can generate additional revenue for a QSE. Based on schedules of 45 QSE's during a two-week period in August 2001, some of the companies' forecasts were consistently in error by various ranges, and in some cases, by well over 100 percent.

Janee Briesmeister, a senior analyst at the Austin office of Consumers Union said that if a penalty resulted, she thought it should be more than a "slap on the wrist." Adib, whose office will seek guidance from commissioners on any penalties that may result, told the Dallas Fort-Worth Star-Telegram, "you cannot overschedule for so many days - one day after another - without really realizing what you are doing."
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