Daybreak Power’s 2.2-Gigawatt Pumped Hydro Project to Utilize Retired Navajo Coal Plant’s Power Lines

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission accepted Daybreak Power Inc.’s application for a preliminary permit for its proposed 2,200 megawatt Navajo Energy Storage Station, Arizona, according to a Jan. 14 notice. The estimated $3.6 billion pumped storage hydro project would utilize transmission infrastructure that was previously used by the retired Navajo Generating Station coal plant. The…

U.S. Interior Department Announces Utah Oil, Gas Lease Sale

The U.S. Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management will offer 25 parcels of land, totaling about 32,700 acres located on Uintah County, at the March quarterly oil and gas lease sale, according to a Jan. 23 news release. The bureau will hold the lease sale online on March 10. The agency will conduct an additional…

FERC Approves Transmission Planning, Cybersecurity Standards to Strengthen Grid Reliability

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved two reliability standards developed by the North American Electric Reliability Corporation to enhance transmission planning and cybersecurity, according to a Jan. 23 news release. The commission also accepted NERC’s performance assessment, endorsing the continued work of the corporation, now in its 13th year as the Electric Reliability Organization. In…

California Bill Seeks to Add Nuclear Power to Renewable Portfolio Standard

Republican lawmakers introduced legislation on Jan. 16 that would allow all hydroelectric generating facilities in operation as of Jan. 1, 2021, and nuclear power plants to qualify for California’s Renewable Portfolio Standard program. The legislation would also suspend the renewable power mandates, and direct the savings from the temporary pause to investor-owned utilities’ infrastructure investments to…

Michigan Regulator Approves $36 Million Revenue Hike for Indiana Michigan Power’s Electric Services

The Michigan Public Service Commission authorized a settlement agreement, allowing Indiana Michigan Power Co. to raise electric rates by $36.4 million per year, about 38 percent lower than the utility’s request, according to a Jan. 23 news release. The new rates, which take effect on Feb. 1, will increase monthly residential bills by about 15…

Trump Administration Allows Right-of-Way Permit for Controversial Keystone XL Pipeline

The U.S. Interior Department issued a decision allowing the Bureau of Land Management to offer a right-of-way grant for TC Energy to construct the Keystone XL pipeline across 44 miles of federal lands in Montana, according to a Jan. 22 news release. The decision brings the $8 billion project a step closer to construction despite pending…

Virginia Bill Seeks to Establish Competitive Retail Power Market

Virginia Delegates Mark Keam, a Democrat, and Lee Ware, a Republican, introduced legislation on Jan. 17 that would enable customers to purchase electricity from the retail provider of their choice, ending monopoly control over the state’s energy system. The bill would require each incumbent investor-owned utility, electric cooperative, and municipal electric authority to separate its…

Maryland Regulator Appeals FERC Capacity Market Order Citing Potential to Frustrate State Clean Energy Efforts

The Maryland Public Service Commission requested rehearing of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s order issued last December to revamp PJM Interconnection LLC’s capacity market rules, according to a Jan. 21 news release. The ruling would expand the minimum offer price rule, or MOPR, to new or existing resources entitled to state subsidies, with certain exemptions.…

California Regulator Allots $1 Billion for Distributed Energy Projects to Boost Wildfire Resiliency

The California Public Utilities Commission on Jan. 16 approved $830 million in new funding for the Self-Generation Incentive Program, or SGIP, prioritizing energy storage projects for communities most impacted by utilities’ public safety power shutoff events to avoid the risk of power lines starting wildfires. When added to unspent funds from previous years, the decision…

New York Expects $4.6 Billion in Savings From New Pricing Structure for Renewable Energy Procurement

The New York Public Service Commission on Jan. 16 issued an order authorizing the state’s Energy Research and Development Authority to offer an index renewable energy credit price option in addition to the traditional fixed-price in future solicitations for long-term renewable energy contracts. The new pricing structure, expected to reduce risks for developers and lower…