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IEEFA Research

IEEFA Report: Three Timely Takeaways on 2016 Global Energy Transformation

IEEFA Report: Three Timely Takeaways on 2016 Global Energy Transformation

An Acceleration to Renewables, Faster-Than-Expected Shifts Regionally and Nationally, Growing Risk for Investors Who Lag Behind

Three notable takeaways emerge from the rapid transformation of the global energy economy, as we detail in a new paper we published today as the landmark Paris Agreement officially goes into effect. The global transition to renewables is accelerating. Change is happening faster than expected. Those left behind in this transition face growing financial risk. […]

November 5, 2016 Read More →

IEEFA Exxon: Telltale Crossover in Late 2014 Marks Where a Major Oil Stock Began to Go South

A Decoupling From the Larger Stock Market 2 Years Ago Portends a Future in Which the World’s Biggest Oil Company Will Be Smaller and Will Not Pay Out as Much in Shareholder Distributions

The world is moving in fits and starts but with gathering momentum toward a more diversified, low-carbon energy mix. The evidence is all around us. One exhibit, of many, is in the report we published this week—“Red Flags on Exxon: A Note to Institutional Investors”—which includes the chart here: ExxonMobil Financial Performance, 2006 – 2015 […]

October 27, 2016 Read More →
IEEFA Report: Red Flags on ExxonMobil: Core Financials Show a Company in Decline

IEEFA Report: Red Flags on ExxonMobil: Core Financials Show a Company in Decline

Potentially Irreversible Slide; Falling Revenues, Rising Debt, Shrinking Capex, Weak Cash Balances Add to Growing Reputational Risk Tied to Climate-Change Controversy; ; Institutional Investors Owe Their Shareholders a Fiduciary Review

CLEVELAND, Oct. 26, 2016 (IEEFA.org) — The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) published a report today that indicates deep financial weaknesses at ExxonMobil (XOM) and suggests the company is in potentially irreversible decline. The report—“Red Flags on ExxonMobil (XOM)”—by IEEFA Director of Finance Tom Sanzillo, cites key metrics that include a 45 […]

October 26, 2016 Read More →

IEEFA Global: A $51 Billion Gap (and a $51 Billion Opportunity) in BRICS Nations’ Renewable Energy Development

How to Meet the Goal? Through "Blended Finance" Where Public Funds Unleash Private Money

Here, in one chart, is an IEEFA picture worth a thousand words. While some $130 billion was invested last year in renewable-energy development in the BRICS countries—Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa—billions more are required if these countries are to meet their commitments to climate-change mitigation policies. The four countries, in all, have announced […]

October 17, 2016 Read More →
IEEFA Europe: Blueprint for a Lignite Phase-Out in Germany

IEEFA Europe: Blueprint for a Lignite Phase-Out in Germany

Foundation-Based Approach to Closure and Clean-Up; New Czech Owners of Vattenfall Assets in Lausitz Can Afford to Foot the Bill; a Timeline That Helps Local Communities Prepare for Transition

The recent “sale” by the Swedish state-owned utility Vattenfall of its German lignite assets throws a harsh light on a dark paradox: the continued use of the world’s most carbon-intensive fuel by a country with some of the most ambitious targets to tackle climate change. The deal transfers a cluster of lignite mines and their […]

September 22, 2016 Read More →
IEEFA Texas: The Beginning of the End for Coal-Fired Electricity Across One of the Biggest Power Markets in the U.S.

IEEFA Texas: The Beginning of the End for Coal-Fired Electricity Across One of the Biggest Power Markets in the U.S.

Report Finds Seven Plants Emblematic of a Fading Industry

We published a research report today describing how the coal-fired electricity industry in Texas is in decline and unlikely to recover in the face of rising competition from other energy sources. Our report—“The Beginning of the End: Fundamental Changes in Energy Markets Are Undermining the Financial Viability of Coal-Fired Power Plants in Texas”—looks specifically at […]

September 12, 2016 Read More →
IEEFA Report: A Cynical Re-Regulation Strategy in West Virginia

IEEFA Report: A Cynical Re-Regulation Strategy in West Virginia

FirstEnergy’s Machinations Around the Pleasants Power Station Are Designed to Shift Risk to Ratepayers

In seeking to get the West Virginia Public Service Commission to allow it to sell all or a portion of its Pleasants Power Station, Ohio-based FirstEnergy Corp. is following a strategy of re-regulation that stands to benefit shareholders at ratepayer expense. The coal-fired 1,300-megawatt Pleasants plant is currently owned by a FirstEnergy deregulated subsidiary, Allegheny […]

September 8, 2016 Read More →
IEEFA Ohio: Damn Tradition, Bailouts Are Where It’s At

IEEFA Ohio: Damn Tradition, Bailouts Are Where It’s At

Update: FirstEnergy Piles Insult Onto Billions of Dollars in Injury by Threatening to Move Its Headquarters From Akron

Call me old-fashioned, but I’ve always thought investor-owned electric utilities were set up to provide power to consumers who paid for what they got.    In states where electricity is deregulated, utility companies compete for customers—just like any other business does. And in states where utilities are regulated, public-utility commissions determine how rates are set […]

August 24, 2016 Read More →
IEEFA Report: India Clings to Questionable Ultra Mega Power Plant Plans

IEEFA Report: India Clings to Questionable Ultra Mega Power Plant Plans

Viability Issues Continue to Complicate New Coal-Fired Projects

We’ve published a report today noting that while India has undergone an admirable energy-policy shift over the past few years, it is clinging unwisely to plans to build two costly coal-fired Ultra Mega Power Plants. Our report—“India’s Questionable Ultra Mega Power Plans”— details how these UMPP projects stand in jarring contrast to better-advised initiatives that […]

August 3, 2016 Read More →
IEEFA Kentucky: Owensboro Coal-Fired Power Plant Is No Longer Viable


IEEFA Kentucky: Owensboro Coal-Fired Power Plant Is No Longer Viable


Increasingly Expensive to Operate and a Drain on Ratepayers 


We’ve published a memorandum today explaining why the aging coal-fired Elmer Smith power plant in Owensboro, Ky., must be retired soon and how Owensboro Municipal Utilities would do well to invest in renewable electricity generation instead. Our memorandum describes how the plant—whose two units date from 1964 and 1974—has become increasingly uneconomic to operate and […]

More News and Commentary

‘Bearish Fundamentals’ Diminish Hopes for U.S. Coal-Export Renaissance

SNL: The export market for U.S. thermal coal continues to gain strength but is likely only a temporary boost given the bearish long-term fundamentals for domestic consumption, several speakers at an industry event said Dec. 5. Emily Medine, a principal with Energy Ventures Analysis, said at the American Coal Council’s annual Coal Trading Conference in […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

Capitalizing on ‘New Frontier,’ Biggest U.S. Utility Partners in Energy-Storage Venture

Power Engineering: The nation’s largest utility holding company and a major lithium supplier are partnering up to create a new company designed to connect investors with well-researched opportunities in the energy storage sector. Exelon Corp. and Albemarle Corp. announced Wednesday that they were founding investors in Volta Energy Technologies. The new Napierville, Illinois-based firm seeks […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

General Electric, Citing Shrinking Demand for Fossil-Fuel Generated Power, Announces 12,000 Layoffs

Reuters: General Electric Co is axing 12,000 jobs at its global power business, the struggling industrial conglomerate’s latest effort to shrink itself into a more focused company. The U.S. company launched the cuts to save $1 billion in 2018, saying it expected dwindling demand for fossil fuel power plants to continue. “Traditional power markets including […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

Investors Grow Weary of U.S. Shale Losses

Wall Street Journal: Twelve major shareholders in U.S. shale-oil-and-gas producers met this September in a Midtown Manhattan high-rise with a view of Times Square to discuss a common goal, getting those frackers to make money for a change. In the months since, shareholders have put the screws to shale executives in ways that are changing […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

U.S. Coal, Nuclear Industries Seek Billions in Tax-Credit Bailouts

Axios: Two separate lobbying pushes are underway urging Congress to create new multi-billion dollar tax credits benefiting virtually all coal and nuclear power plants across the United States. The price tags: up to $65 billion for coal and $4.8 billion for nuclear. The efforts show the aggressive lengths companies are going trying to survive in […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

U.S. Senate Bill Aims to Loosen Investment Restrictions for Florida Solar Industry

WTLV (Jacksonville): U.S. Senator Bill Nelson introduced legislation this week that could further expand the solar industry in Florida by allowing banks to invest heavily in the renewable energy sector, a financial move which is currently banned under Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation regulation. Under the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, bank holding companies (BHCs) […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

Another Coal Plant Closes in Upper Midwest

Wisconsin Public Radio: An energy company is shuttering another coal-fired power plant in Wisconsin. WEC Energy is closing its plant in Green Bay, and it comes on the heels of the company closing another facility in Pleasant Prairie. The Green Bay closure isn’t a surprise, the company announced its plans to shutter the plant last […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

Kentucky Utility Sees Coal-Powered Electricity All but Disappearing by 2050

WFPL (Louisville): Kentucky’s largest electric utility expects to be powered more than 80 percent by natural gas or renewable energy by the middle of this century — regardless of whether the country’s energy policies change. Last month, PPL — the corporation that owns both Louisville Gas and Electric and Kentucky Utilities — released a climate […]

December 7, 2017 Read More →

West Virginia Mine Lays Off Most of Its Workers

Exponent Telegram (Clarksburg): A mine in Marion County has idled almost all its workers. Enough workers are on hand at the Federal No. 2 mine to prevent the mine from flooding and to keep it ready to reopen, but “it’s a minimal, skeletal crew,” said Phil Smith, communications director for the United Mine Workers of […]

December 6, 2017 Read More →

$40 Billion Investment Opportunity Seen in U.S. Wind-Farm Upgrades

GreenTech Media: North America’s aging fleet of wind turbines could lead to a surge in operations and maintenance spending through 2030, according to a report released this month by IHS Markit. The report found cumulative O&M spending for the wind energy sector in the United States and Canada will top $40 billion from 2015 to […]

December 4, 2017 Read More →