Commentary

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IEFFA Update: Looking for innovation in the wrong place, ExxonMobil opens an energy-trading desk

As its core business falters, an oil major seeks speculation-driven profits

ExxonMobil is said to be seeking a much-needed lift through an initiative on which the company has issued no official detail but that will vastly expand its trading capabilities. Hopes are, evidently, that by opening a bigger energy-trading desk Exxon—through speculation—can reverse its trend over the past decade toward shrinking profits, a trend driven by […]

IEEFA op-ed: Why the SEC should conduct the investigation of Puerto Rico’s debt obligations

One agency is well-positioned to do a thorough and fair review

Puerto Rico’s non-bondholding creditors — companies that have supplied the commonwealth with goods and services such as oil deliveries — have asked the court overseeing the commonwealth’s bankruptcy proceedings to let them conduct an investigation into the territory’s debt history. Clearly, a thorough and objective inquiry is necessary, but the organization most likely and best […]

June 22, 2018 Read More →
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IEEFA op-ed: Latest Puerto Rico utility privatization plan is as flawed as the original

In its version of a bill to privatize the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, the Puerto Rico legislature has improved some on Governor Ricardo Rosselló’s original proposal, but lawmakers are ultimately failing the Puerto Rican people every bit as badly as Rosselló has. We’ve criticized the governor’s original privatization proposal for essentially aiming to set […]

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IEEFA update: Pushback from the big boys against U.S. coal bailout campaign

Core resistance by colossal players across the energy industry

The Trump administration’s scheme to subsidize the coal industry has nothing to do with grid resiliency or energy security—the White House is simply picking a favorite in the heated battle for market share across the U.S. electricity generation sector. The coal industry is losing this battle. Its contribution to the U.S. electricity generation mix dropped […]

IEEFA Europe: As risks mount, Poland’s PGE struggles to break from its fossil fuel past

Utility company’s actions contradict its stated intent to change

The extreme case of Poland’s largest utility, PGE, shows how Europe’s more coal-intensive power companies are struggling to turn away from fossil fuels. Headwinds facing fossil fuel electricity generation in Europe include the global transition toward low-carbon energy sources, pressure on investors to align their investments accordingly, and environmental advocacy opposing bank financing of coal […]

June 14, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA report: Poland’s biggest utility is risking financial instability by doubling down on coal-fired generation

New EU emissions regulations raise compliance issues at PGE; Outdated business model may cost billions; ‘An accelerated deployment of renewables’ makes more sense

June 13, 2018 (IEEFA) – New air pollution regulations coupled with rising carbon prices put Poland’s biggest utility, PGE, at serious risk of financial disarray if it continues to pursue a coal-heavy upgrade strategy, concludes a report published today by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. A strategic shift toward a renewable energy-based […]

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IEEFA update: Fund managers who acquiesce to ExxonMobil’s climate-risk denial do their investors a disservice

New York state comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli drops the ball

It was a failure of epic proportions when, after demanding but not getting action last year, most shareholders voted to re-elect ExxonMobil’s board of directors on May 30, abdicating their duty to hold the company to account. Sixty-two percent of shareholders in 2017 supported a resolution calling for ExxonMobil to improve its climate risk disclosures. […]

IEEFA update: The American wind-energy horse is out of the barn

Power purchase agreement prices fall

Almost a decade has gone by now since U.S. wind-turbine power purchase agreements were priced at $70 per megawatt-hour. Technology advances and efficiency gains have since driven a seemingly relentless drop in such prices. Average wind power purchase agreements had fallen to $20 per megawatt-hour (MWh) by 2016, and in December 2017, Xcel Energy—the Minnesota […]

IEEFA update: Heartland U.S. utilities continue to move away from coal

Activity of note this week in Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin

The Trump administration’s proposal to invoke the wartime Defense Production Act as a back-door way to keep failing coal-fired electricity plants is little more than a sideshow to the real action taking place outside the beltway. All across America, the transition from coal to cleaner, cheaper forms of electricity generation continues, and will likely continue, […]

IEEFA op-ed: Japan remains mostly stuck in the energy policy past

Overreliance on coal, and an odd reluctance to exploit national technology advantages

When G7 countries gather in Canada this week, it’s not unreasonable to expect that common ground will be hard to find in many policy areas. When it comes to energy policy, President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accords and his pro-coal policies have grabbed headlines and caused furrowed brows among U.S. allies. With […]

June 5, 2018 Read More →