IEEFA Research

IEEFA Analysis: Financial Condition of Montana’s Colstrip 1 and 2 Worse Than Previously Known

IEEFA Analysis: Financial Condition of Montana’s Colstrip 1 and 2 Worse Than Previously Known

Costs to Ratepayers Stand to Increase if Puget Sound Keeps Two Coal-Fired Plants Alive

In testimony today to the state Utilities and Transportation Commission in Olympia, Wash., we are presenting fresh analyses that shows how two coal-fired electricity generators in Montana co-owned by Puget Sound Energy are worse investments  than previously known. Over the past several months, IEEFA has documented how Colstrip 1 and 2 have become an increasingly […]

Study Concludes That Colstrip 1 and 2 Are Financially Unviable; Cautions Against Further Expenditures

Study Concludes That Colstrip 1 and 2 Are Financially Unviable; Cautions Against Further Expenditures

In an Era of Low Natural-Gas Prices and Competition From Renewable Energy, Phasing Out Two Coal-Fired Units Is the Best Option for Owners

JUNE 23, 2015 (IEEFA) — An analysis of data on operational costs and energy markets by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis questions the financial viability of the two oldest units at the Colstrip coal-fired power plant in eastern Montana. Colstrip Units 1 and 2, which are owned equally by Talen Montana and Puget Sound […]

June 23, 2015 Read More →

More News and Commentary

Westmoreland bankruptcy raises questions about future of Colstrip coal plant

Bloomberg Environment: One of the largest power plants in the West could be at risk if Westmoreland Coal raises the price of coal as the utility’s sole supplier as part of its bankruptcy proceedings. Nearly three-quarters of the Colstrip Power Plant’s electricity production could grind to a halt, its owners say, if Westmoreland’s potential new […]

February 12, 2019 Read More →

Montana legislator introduces bill for state to buy Colstrip coal plant

Montana Public Radio: Lawmakers in Helena are starting to debate whether the state could borrow up to $500 million to buy the coal-fired power plant in Colstrip. The future of the plant is up in the air. The West Coast consumers who Colstrip sends most of its power to are pushing away from coal-powered electricity […]

January 22, 2019 Read More →

Former, current owners take fight over Montana’s troubled Colstrip coal plant to court Pennsylvania-based PPL Corp. filed its own lawsuit Friday in a legal dispute with the Colstrip power-plant operator over $733 million in proceeds from the 2014 sale of a dozen Montana hydroelectric dams. Talen Energy, which operates the four coal-fired power plants in Colstrip in southeast Montana, sued PPL in state District Court in late […]

December 3, 2018 Read More →

Westmoreland’s Rosebud Mine heads to the auction block

Billings Gazette: The lone source of coal for the Colstrip power plant has been scheduled for bankruptcy auction in late January. Rosebud Mine will be auctioned Jan. 22, if necessary, to help pay the debts of Westmoreland Coal Co., which owns the mine. The United States Bankruptcy Court Southern District of Texas on Thursday set […]

November 19, 2018 Read More →

Westmoreland bankruptcy underscores financial stress across the coal sector

Bloomberg: Westmoreland Coal Co.’s Oct. 9 bankruptcy filing is the latest in a string of coal company stumbles bucking the Trump administration’s narrative of a fossil fuel revival. With the Chapter 11 filing of Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Westmoreland, four of the nation’s top 10 biggest coal providers have now sought bankruptcy protection within the last […]

October 11, 2018 Read More →

New EPA plan not likely to help Montana’s Colstrip coal plant

Montana Standard: President Donald Trump’s plan to replace Obama-era air pollution rules with coal-friendly policies got a mixed reception by Montana officials uncertain what the changes would mean for the Colstrip Power Plant. Republicans praised Trump’s plans to scrap former President Barrack Obama’s Clean Power Plan as good news for coal power. Though never carried […]

August 23, 2018 Read More →

Emissions force Talen to take Colstrip coal units offline

Billings Gazette: Colstrip Power Plant, one of the largest electricity generators in the northwestern United States, has been shut down for at least a month because of air pollution problems, The Billings Gazette has learned. Talen Energy, which operates the plant, is trying to dispel rumors that newer portions of the four-generator power plant have […]

July 25, 2018 Read More →

New Washington State Rules Are Another Blow to Colstrip Coal Plant

The Seattle Times: State regulators this week stepped up their activism on the climate front by telling three utilities to reconsider the carbon-emission costs of producing electricity from coal and other fossil fuels. The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission directives were sent to Puget Sound Energy, Avista Corp and Pacific Power, which collectively serve more […]

May 10, 2018 Read More →

Another Step Toward Closure of Major Montana Coal Plant

Billings Gazette: A second Colstrip owner has agreed to be financially ready nine years from now to the shutter the coal-fired power plant’s newest units. Avista Corp., of Spokane, Washington, is putting December 2027 as the end of “remaining useful life” for Colstrip Units 3 and 4. That means the Washington utility will be financially […]

March 21, 2018 Read More →

In Colstrip, Montana, a Sense of the Inevitable

KTVH (Helena): The future of the nation’s coal industry was in the spotlight this week during the State of the Union speech, but here in Montana, things seemed much more dim. President Trump declared the war on energy and the war on clean coal over in his speech, but a new report by the Institute […]

February 2, 2018 Read More →