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Xcel Energy Expands Plans to Add Wind Farm Capacity to 3,380 MW

LCG, March 23, 2017--Xcel Energy yesterday announced plans to make the largest multi-state investment in wind capacity in the country. The proposed plan is expected to increase the amount of wind energy in the Xcel's energy mix by 2021, with wind fueling nearly 35 percent of its total energy mix.

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First Solar Starts Operations of the 250-MW Moapa Southern Paiute Solar Project

LCG, March 22, 2017--First Solar, Inc. Friday held the commissioning ceremony for the Moapa Southern Paiute Solar Project, located approximately 30 miles north of Las Vegas on the Moapa River Indian Reservation. The power generated by the 250-MW solar photovoltaic (PV) project will be purchased under a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power(LADWP).

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Industry News

FirstEnergy Pursues State Legislation to Support Nuclear Plants in Ohio

LCG, February 24, 2017--FirstEnergy Corp. is pursuing legislation in Ohio to provide financial support to its two nuclear power plants, Davis-Besse and Perry, through a zero emission credits (ZECs) program. The financial support is sought to avoid premature retirement of the carbon-free electric generating facilities that have a combined capacity of 2,176 MW.

On Wednesday, FirstEnergy's president and chief executive officer stated, "We continue to assess and evaluate a number of strategic alternatives for our companies - for our competitive business, including asset sales, legislative or regulatory initiatives for generation that recognizes environmental or energy security benefits, alternatives for our retail business and financial restructuring."

Last year, state legislation with ZEC programs was passed in Illinois and New York to provide financial support and avoid early retirement of nuclear plants located in those states. The nuclear power plants are challenged to compete in a market with a growing number of combined-cycle plants fueled by low-cost natural gas. Furthermore, aggressive state renewable portfolio standards drive significant new installations of wind and solar capacity that reduce the net electricity load and dampen wholesale power prices. The New York Clean Energy Plan goal is 50 percent renewable energy by 2030, and the Illinois Renewables Portfolio Standard goal is 25 percent for 2026. In addition to providing clean energy with no carbon dioxide or other air emissions, the number of employees at the nuclear plants and the associated plant property taxes are a significant benefit to the counties in which the plants are located.
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