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Threat of shutdown hovers over negotiations between Millstone and utilities over power prices

The Malloy administration last year selected Millstone as a source of “low-cost zero carbon energy” and offshore wind that combined will bolster Connecticut’s contribution to reduced emissions. The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection directed Eversource and UI to negotiate a price downward “to better reflect a reasonable rate of return for the plant’s owner, Dominion Energy,” then-Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said in December.

A “normal utility rate of return on equity” is 9 percent, but the state would consider 12 percent to 15 percent reasonable for a plant with a long-term contract, Malloy said.

Emily Lewis, a senior policy analyst at the Acadia Center, an environmental advocacy group, said the attempt to negotiate a lower price with Millstone is a “big ask.”

“It comes back to ratepayers,” she said. “How much are ratepayers going to pay to subsidize Millstone?”

Read the full article from the Hartford Courant here.

Millstone, offshore wind among zero-carbon auction winners

Emily Lewis, senior policy analyst at Acadia Center, called the offshore wind procurement “another step forward for Connecticut.”

“Adding more offshore wind to the state’s clean energy portfolio will continue the momentum of this growing industry,” she said. “By carving out a portion of this RFP for offshore wind, the state is working to incrementally build its clean energy economy.”

Lewis said it seemed like Connecticut was “being a little shy” to enter the offshore wind game compared to Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island. She noted the Acadia Center and Connecticut Roundtable on Climate and Jobs called on the state to set “an offshore wind mandate similar to other East Coast states.”

Read the full article from The Day here (article may be behind paywall).

State backs Millstone bid to compete as zero-emissions player in energy auctions

Environmental advocates also have questioned Millstone’s need for state action.

Emily Lewis, senior policy analyst at the Acadia Center, a clean energy advocacy group, said Millstone “plays an important role in the energy mix” because it does not produce carbon dioxide. But policymakers should not “throw money at Millstone that could be used for renewables” such as solar and wind power, she said.

If and when the plant is retired, the power it generates should be replaced by offshore wind, Lewis said.

Read the full article from the Hartford Courant here.

Nuclear waste storage projects receive bipartisan boost

Titus on Thursday proposed an amendment paving the way for consent-based siting and scrapping the Yucca Mountain project. It failed 332-80.

Emily Lewis of the Acadia Center, which promotes clean energy, said Friday a “consensus-based process” was favorable, because “we need a central repository for that waste, but it seems like that community does not want that storage.”

Read the full article from The Day here (article may be behind paywall).

Debate over Millstone rages on

“Millstone Power Station may play a role in the state’s transition to the clean energy future, but Connecticut needs a realistic, long-term plan to replace the plant with clean energy,” Acadia Center said this week.

In the absence of such a plan, Acadia Center argued new fossil fuel power plants eventually would replace Millstone. Ratepayers would be on the hook for new gas pipeline infrastructure to support them, which “would be almost immediately incompatible with the state and region’s mandatory greenhouse gas targets,” the environmental advocacy group said.

Read the full article from The Day here (article may be behind paywall).

Commenters Seek Broader Response on Millstone

Kerry Schlichting of the Acadia Center said that because the study results could influence Connecticut’s long-term energy strategy, her organization asked DEEP and PURA to “issue a draft methodology and base case scenario sometime this fall for stakeholder review and comment” before the release of the draft report in early December. If the agencies wait too long it will be difficult to incorporate stakeholder feedback on modeling issues, she said.

Read the full article from RTO Insider here.

CT’s delayed energy plan could mean trouble for Millstone bill

“The reality of the competition being set up for Millstone is no competition at all,” said Bill Dornbos, who heads the Connecticut office of the environmental advocacy group Acadia Center. “It’s a competition that’s going to have one winner.”

Read the full article from the CT Mirror here.