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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

Kauai Utility Signs Deal With SolarCity for Solar Array and Battery Storage System

LCG, September 11, 2015-Kauai Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) announced Wednesday that it has signed a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with SolarCity for electricity from the first utility-scale solar array and battery storage system designed to supply power to the grid in the evening, after the sun sets and customer demands remain high.

A rapid approval and construction schedule is needed to take advantage of federal investment tax credits and reduce project costs. Construction is targeted to begin by April 2016 so that the project can achieve commercial operation by December 31, 2016. KIUC has requested an accelerated approval process by the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission.

The solar array and battery storage facility will be built on 50 acres of land adjacent to KIUC's Kapaia Power Station. The project includes a 52 MWh battery system with a 13-MW capacity to deliver power to the grid in the evening and reduce the need to consume fossil fuel at KIUC's adjacent simple-cycle facility (or other such facilities). By using the solar energy stored in the battery instead of diesel generators, KIUC will reduce its use of imported fossil fuels and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

SolarCity has an arrangement with Tesla Motors to distribute battery packs for both homes and utility-scale energy' storage.

According to KIUC, it will pay SolarCity a lower rate than the current cost of conventional generation and only slightly more than the cost of energy from KIUC's two existing 12 MW solar arrays, which lack storage.

KIUC's President and CEO stated, "KIUC has been investigating energy storage options for more than two years and price has always been the biggest challenge. This is a breakthrough project on technology and on price that enables us to move solar energy to the peak demand hours in the evening and reduce the amount of fossil fuel we're using."

SolarCity was the contractor on KIUC's first 12-MW solar array in Koloa, which went into commercial operation a year ago and supplies about five percent of Kauai's electricity.
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