Archive: News

Holtec’s HI-STORM UMAX system loaded at a U.S. nuclear power plant. Courtesy: Holtec

NRC Schedules Review of New Mexico Interim Nuclear Waste Facility

Marking a fresh development for the nation’s futile efforts to resolve a long-standing impasse on nuclear waste, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) said it could issue a license for Holtec International’s proposed consolidated interim storage (CIS) facility for used nuclear fuel in New Mexico by July 2020 or earlier. Holtec, a Camden, New Jersey–based supplier […]

Public Service Co. of New Mexico (PNM) closed Unit 2 and 3 of the four-unit San Juan Generating Station (SJGS) near Farmington, New Mexico, in December 2017. Unit 2 came online when the plant opened in 1973 and is the oldest unit at San Juan. Unit 3 began operation in 1979. The shutdown of these two units will result in the reduction of energy generation of approximately 836 MW. PNM plans to replace the loss in generation with a diverse mix of increased renewable energy, existing nuclear power, natural gas generation, and increased power capacity from Unit 4. 

Courtesy: Kip Malone/PNM

More Coal and Nuclear Can Replace Retired Generation, State Supreme Court Rules

The Supreme Court for the state of New Mexico affirmed a final order by state regulators to allow Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) to replace lost generation from two shuttered units at its 1,800-MW coal-fired San Juan Regional Generation Station with coal and nuclear resources. The case stems from a petition filed by […]

The 2018 winning Connected Plant Game Changers together with presenters, Dorothy Lozowski, Editorial Director (center) and Aaron Larson, Executive Editor (left). Photo credit: Travis Burton

Congratulations to the Connected Plant Game Changers

The Connected Plant Game Changer Award recognizes those people who are leading the charge in implementing digital technologies in their field: either in the chemical process industries or in power generation. Nominations are open to individuals who have used tools associated with digitalization to contribute to innovation, solve a problem or make improvements, as well […]

This is a rendering of the proposed Dania Beach Clean Energy Center, which will replace the existing Lauderdale power plant in Florida. Florida Power & Light says the new facility could come online in 2022. Courtesy: Florida Power & Light

FPL Will Build New Gas Plant, Adds More Solar

Florida regulators on March 1 approved Florida Power & Light’s (FPL’s) plan to build a new $888 million natural gas-fired power plant, replacing an existing gas- and oil-fueled plant on the same site in Dania Beach that is being retired this year. The utility on Thursday also announced the opening of four new solar power […]

Gullies in the coal ash pond at the Duke Energy Dan River Steam Station show where coal ash flowed towards the Dan River beyond the far berm.(John D. Simmons/Charlotte Observer/MCT)

EPA Proposes Overhaul of 2015 Final Coal Ash Rule 

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed more than a dozen significant changes to the Obama administration’s final 2015 rule governing disposal of coal combustion residuals (CCR) by the nation’s power generators. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt on March 1 signed the first of two rules that propose to amend the 2015 rule, saying the changes […]

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FERC Finds No Evidence of Gas Withholding in New England

No evidence exists that New England local gas distribution companies engaged in practices to withhold natural gas pipeline capacity on the Algonquin system to drive up gas or power prices in the region, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) staff revealed. FERC on February 27 closed an inquiry after conducting an “extensive review” of the allegations—which […]

Part of the Desert Sky Wind Farm off I-10 in Texas. Desert Sky Wind Farm is a 160.5 megawatt wind power station located near the far West Texas town. Source: Wikimedia Commons

ERCOT Anticipates Summer Supply Crunch Amid Unit Retirements

The recent retirement of older generating units and high peak usage owing to economic growth could tighten operating reserves in the region served by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) this summer. The grid operator said on March 1 that total resource capacity for the upcoming summer (spanning June through September 2018) is expected […]

1. A changing landscape. The Vogtle expansion project made progress even amidst uncertainty as owners considered options late last year including possible abandonment of the project. This image was taken December 14, 2017. Courtesy: Georgia Power

Vogtle Improves Safety and Productivity Following Westinghouse Bankruptcy

According to Georgia Power’s Eighteenth Semi-annual Vogtle Construction Monitoring Report (VCM) released on February 28, more than 12 million man-hours have been worked without a lost-time injury at the Vogtle expansion project since Westinghouse filed for bankruptcy on March 29, 2017. Additionally, the company said productivity has improved since Southern Nuclear Operating Company assumed overall […]


ICS Cybersecurity Threatened, but Defense Woefully Inadequate

Though increasingly serious cybersecurity threats loom, nearly two-thirds of U.S. industrial control system (ICS) vulnerabilities identified in 2017 could cause severe operational impact if exploited, cybersecurity firm Dragos Inc. warned in a series of reports published March 1. The reports, which cover ICS vulnerabilities, ICS threats, and reactions to existing threats, draw a dire picture […]

BP_StorageMandates_Rev.Feb 13

The Big Picture: Energy Storage Mandates

While 29 states and the District of Columbia currently have Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS)—goals for power producers to provide a certain amount of power from renewable sources by a specific date—a growing number of states are also instituting standalone targets and mandates for energy storage procurement. Sources: Energy Storage Association, North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center, Lawrence Berkeley […]