EIA Publishes Regional Electricity Supply and Pricing Forecasts Using UPLAN Model

LCG, August 13, 2019--The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) announced that it is revising the presentation and modeling of its forecasts for electricity supply and market hub pricing to better reflect current electricity markets and system operations in the U.S. Beginning with the August 2019 Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), the new forecasting approach models electricity markets using the UPLAN production cost optimization software developed by LCG Consulting. EIA uses the solution results provided by this proprietary model to develop the STEO forecasts of monthly electricity generation, fuel consumption, and wholesale prices.

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Dominion Energy Virginia Pursues 500 MW of Renewable Projects

LCG, August 8, 2019--Dominion Energy Virginia announced Monday that it is seeking bids for up to 500 MW of renewable capacity in both 2021 and 2022 to increase its clean energy resources. Dominion Energy stated that it is committed to having 3,000 MW of solar and wind in operation or under development in Virginia by 2022. This near-term step is part of an ultimate company commitment to reduce carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050 across the 18 states it serves.

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Industry News

Easily Recoverable Appalachian Coal Expected to Last 20 Years

LCG, Mar. 29, 2002--A study conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey over six years concludes that 11 percent of the substantial coal reserves in Appalachian states can be recovered economically with current technology.

Technological advances have increased the amount of recoverable coal, but Leslie Ruppert, who led the study, said that the coal accessible to mining using present techniques may be exhausted within two decades. Beyond the 7.3 billion short tons considered recoverable, Ruppert said, "today, it is coal quality, and not coal quantity, that controls coal pruduction in the Appalachian basin." Of the coal that is not economically viable today, disadvantages include high sulfur content, and seams that are thin or deep underground.

Bill Raney, with the West Virginia Mining Association said, "right now, we're mining coal seams we passed over years ago. I've got a lot of hope in technology." Raney said that the value of coal would impact the amount recovered. Northern Appalachia coal that is high in sulfur content cannot be used under clean air standards, but funding for clean coal technologies that might allow burning of higher sulfur content coal is being considered by Congress.

Approximately 40 percent of national coal production is located in the Appalachian basin, and coal is used to produce about half of national electric generation.
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