Commentary

IEEFA update: Another Texas coal-plant closing, another market signal

Change continues apace in one of the biggest electricity markets in the U.S.

American Electric Power’s confirmation this week that it plans to close its majority-owned 650-megawatt Oklaunion coal plant in Texas by 2020 may have surprised some people—particularly some policymakers in Washington. The plant is only 31 years old, which is well below the average age for the U.S. coal fleet. And as recently as 2013 it […]

September 28, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA report: Polish ‘clean coal’ project risks high construction and operating costs and unreliable performance

ENEA’s projections for Łęczna IGCC are ‘unrealistic’ and would result in higher-priced electricity and emissions than acknowledged

Sept. 26, 2018 (IEEFA) — A proposed gasified-coal-fired power project at Łęczna in Poland risks high build costs and unreliable operation, given real-world experience of similar technology in the United States, concludes a report published today by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA). The report—“Łęczna IGCC Project: High Costs and Unreliable Operations Can […]

September 25, 2018 Read More →
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IEEFA update: Whether prices are high or low, the oil and gas industry is freighted with risk

As technology advances, fossil fuels are expensive at any price

Over the past few years, the rationale for investment in fossil fuels has changed from being one supported by blue-chip, long-term value into a more speculative, volatile proposition driven by quarterly dividends. As a result, the direction of oil prices is increasingly relevant, having become the lens through which investment is assessed, and revenue and […]

IEEFA update: Peabody continues to grapple with decline

Lease relinquishments are a sign of deeper trouble

In Peabody Energy’s recent relinquishment of some of its federal coal leases, the company is cleaning up its production cost side in the face of declining demand, particularly for the lower-quality 8400 BTU product that comes out of the Powder River Basin. The particular Wyoming coal in question has gone from being an asset to […]

September 20, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA update: As Marubeni distances itself from coal, other industrial behemoths will follow

Growing acknowledgement of climate risk to companies and investors alike

SYDNEY — In distancing itself from coal, Japan’s Marubeni Corp., one of the world’s largest developers of coal-fired power plants, is adding to global momentum away from traditional forms of electricity generation. An announcement earlier this week by the company recognises climate risk as a threat to Marubeni’s business and shareholders and states that—as a […]

September 19, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA update: Indonesia hits the reset button on PLN’s expansion plans

Putting the brakes on a runaway state-owned utility

Currency crises can bring hard truths into focus. That’s the lesson that the many parties who have been feeding off of Indonesia’s power sector expansion must be considering after the announcement earlier this month that 13,374[1] megawatts (MW) of planned new power capacity would be delayed. This cannot have come as a surprise. The warning […]

September 18, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA op-ed: Colorado’s pension fund shouldn’t bank on the future of oil and gas

Past performance is no guarantee of future success

By adopting a fossil-free portfolio strategy as has been urged, the Public Employees Retirement Association of Colorado would be doing right by its 560,000 members, ensuring steadier investment returns as the oil and gas industry faces continued uncertainty and decline. In a paper commissioned by the Independent Petroleum Association of America, an anti-divestment consultant and […]

September 18, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA update: A perilous rush toward natural gas dependency in Puerto Rico

Reliance on imported fuel is not in the public’s best energy-security interest

IEEFA is urging the Financial Oversight and Management Board (FOMB) of Puerto Rico to halt the rush to natural gas infrastructure development in Puerto Rico. We’ve sent an open letter to board members warning this ill-advised strategy after recent news reports of PREPA discussions around potential new liquefied natural gas import terminals—at San Juan, Mayaguez […]

September 18, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA update: Rampant political hiring at PREPA only makes matters worse

Too many ‘empleados de confianza’ at the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority

The Kobre & Kim report on Puerto Rico’s debt crisis shines a light on the corrosive impact of political hiring at various governmental agencies on the island, including at its public electric utility. By subsuming competent management to the rough and tumble of political interference in government decision-making and operations, Puerto Rico’s leaders have created […]

September 14, 2018 Read More →
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IEEFA update: Six real-world rebuttals to divestment naysayers

A tendency among academics to overlook the burgeoning risk in fossil fuel holdings

Academic arguments against divesting from the oil and gas sector are just that—academic—and those who make them ignore the underperformance of the sector and the array of mounting risks it faces. The principal objections of divestment detractors—that divestment will either cause institutional investment funds to lose money or undermine their ability to meet their objectives—are […]

and September 12, 2018 Read More →