New York Regulators Approve $400 Million for Upstate Power Line to Support Renewables

The New York Public Service Commission on Sept. 19 authorized New York Transco, a consortium of major utilities, to borrow up to $400 million to upgrade transmission corridors that will allow increased transmission of renewable electricity across the state. In May, Transco sought approval to issue new long-term debt securities to complete the New York…

PG&E, Insurers Reach $11 Billion Settlement to Resolve Wildfire Claims

Pacific Gas and Electric Company announced a $11 billion settlement representing about 85 percent of insurance claims associated with the 2017 and 2018 wildfires in California, according to a Sept. 13 press release. The agreement comes on the heels of PG&E’s reorganization plan filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California,…

California Regulators Greenlight $100 Million for Energy Storage Projects to Boost Wildfire Resilience

The California Public Utilities Commission approved new budgets, modified incentives and rules for energy storage under its Self-Generation Incentive Program, as part of an ongoing effort to improve wildfire resiliency throughout the state, according to a September 12 press release. The program upgrade consists of a $100 million resiliency fund that supports the installation of energy storage in…

Eversource Loses New Hampshire Court Battle Over $1.6 Billion Transmission Project

The New Hampshire Supreme Court on July 19 ruled in favor of the state’s decision that denied a key permit for Eversource Energy to construct its 192-mile Northern Pass transmission line designed to supply hydro power from Hydro-Quebec’s dams in Canada to New England. Last February, the New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee, the state agency…

California Lawmakers Rush $21 Billion Wildfire Liability Bill to Save Embattled Utilities

Lawmakers in California quickly approved legislation providing investor-owned utilities with $21 billion to help them pay for wildfire damages linked to their transmission equipment. Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom signed the bill on July 12. The bill gives companies two options. One is a $10.5 billion state-backed line of credit to pay for wildfire damages that…

Minnesota Power Seeks Over $30 Million in Cost Recovery for Transmission Projects

Minnesota Power, a unit of ALLETE Inc., proposed a rate adjustment to recover the costs related to on-going transmission projects, which include the 500-kilovolt Great Northern Transmission Line that will deliver 383 megawatts of hydropower from Manitoba Hydro beginning in 2020, according to a July 9 filing with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission. The company…

Massachusetts Clears Contracts to Import Canadian Hydro Over $1 Billion Power Line

The Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities on June 25 approved 20-year contracts between Hydro-Québec and the state’s electric distribution companies Unitil Corp., National Grid plc, and Eversource Energy to acquire Canadian hydropower to help the state achieve its clean energy goals. The power will be delivered into New England over a $1 billion transmission line…

Invenergy Wins Missouri Approval to Buy 4-Gigawatt Wind Power Line

The Missouri Public Service Commission authorized Invenergy Investment Company LLC to acquire ownership of Clean Line Energy Partners LLC’s 780-mile Grain Belt Express transmission project, according to a June 5 press release. The $2.3 billion multi-state transmission line is designed to deliver 4 gigawatts of wind power from Western Kansas to Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, and…

California Wildfire Commission Recommends Liability Reform to Save Utilities, Protect Ratepayers

The Commission on Catastrophic Wildfire Cost and Recovery published a draft report on May 29 with recommendations on equitable distribution of costs among affected parties of the catastrophic California wildfires. According to the report, the trend of growing fire activity related to increasing global temperatures coupled with population incursions into high fire risk areas means that…

California Regulator Approves Utility Wildfire Plans, Proactive Power Shutoffs

The California Public Utilities Commission on May 30 approved wildfire mitigation plans for the state’s electric utilities in response to legislation enacted last year that directed electric corporations to file annual plans describing measures to prevent, combat, and respond to wildfires in their service areas. The commission also made enhancements to communication and notification guidelines…

PG&E Power Lines Caused Deadly Camp Fire According to California Investigator

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has determined that Camp Fire, the deadliest and most destructive fire in California history, was caused by electrical transmission lines owned and operated by Pacific Gas and Electric, according to a May 15 press release. The Camp Fire started in Butte County on the morning of November 8,…

Maine Regulator Clears Avangrid’s $1 Billion Hydropower Transmission Line

The Maine Public Utilities Commission on April 11 voted unanimously to grant a permit allowing Central Maine Power Company to move forward with its New England Clean Energy Connect transmission project, which is designed to deliver up to 1,200-megawatts of Canadian hydropower into the Northeast. The proposed 145-mile high-voltage power line would cross western Maine…