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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.

Conn. Zero-Carbon Awards Include Nukes, OSW, Solar

Connecticut officials in June announced they would purchase 200 MW of output from the Revolution Wind project, adding to Rhode Island’s 400-MW procurement. (See Conn. Awards 200-MW OSW, 50-MW Fuel Cell Deals.)

The additional 100-MW “procurement is another step forward for Connecticut in growing its commitment to offshore wind,” said Emily Lewis, senior policy analyst at Acadia Center. “Adding more offshore wind to the state’s clean energy portfolio will continue the momentum of this growing industry … To ensure continued growth of this industry in Connecticut, the state should set an offshore wind mandate similar to other east coast states.”

Read the full article from RTO Insider here (article may be behind paywall).

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).

Connecticut Boosts Offshore Wind in Selecting 100 MW Project

HARTFORD, CT – Today, Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) selected Ørsted US Offshore Wind’s proposal for 100 MW of offshore wind as one of the winning renewable energy bids in its Zero Carbon Resource request for proposals. DEEP also selected Millstone Nuclear Power Station, Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant, and about 165 MW of solar projects – some including storage – to move forward to contract negotiations. The winning proposal from Ørsted US Offshore Wind, formerly Deepwater Wind, is an expansion of the 200 MW Revolution Wind project chosen this summer that was approved by the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority last week. The expansion is estimated to power an additional 45,000 homes.

The full details of the bid are still hidden until the contracts are completed, but public documents showed that Ørsted US Offshore Wind committed an additional $13.7 million to Connecticut and New London in their proposal for port enhancements, economic development, and education.

“This procurement is another step forward for Connecticut in growing its commitment to offshore wind,” said Emily Lewis, senior policy analyst at Acadia Center. “Adding more offshore wind to the state’s clean energy portfolio will continue the momentum of this growing industry. By carving out a portion of this RFP for offshore wind, the state is working to incrementally build its clean energy economy. To ensure continued growth of this industry in Connecticut, the state should set an offshore wind mandate similar to other east coast states.”

“This announcement is good news for our workers and their communities, as it expands the new offshore wind industry’s footprint in Connecticut and demonstrates the state’s interest in securing a share of the highly-paid offshore wind jobs coming to the Northeast,” said John Humphries, lead organizer for the CT Roundtable on Climate and Jobs. “However, this is a very timid step in comparison to other states in the region, and Connecticut needs to make a long-term commitment to a more substantial procurement to attract investments in manufacturing and supply chain activities. We hope the incoming administration will support a more aggressive approach to offshore wind procurement and investment in order to take full advantage of the economic opportunity this industry represents.”


Media Contacts:

Emily Lewis, Senior Policy Advocate; Acadia Center
elewis@acadiacenter.org, 860-246-7121 ext. 207

John Humphries, Lead Organizer; CT Roundtable on Climate and Jobs
john@ctclimateandjobs.org, 860-216-7972

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.