February 26, 2019 Read More →

New Mexico town bids to keep San Juan coal plant running

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):

The city of Farmington, N.M., announced that it has signed a deal with a private holding company to keep the coal-fired San Juan Generating Station open, but the plant’s majority owner and operator, PNM Resources Inc., indicated it does not see how such an arrangement would be viable.

The city announced in a news release on Feb. 24 that it signed an agreement with Acme Equities LLC, which Farmington described as a New York City-based private holding company that focuses on North American energy assets. However, little additional information about the company could immediately be found on Feb. 25.

Farmington, which owns 8.48% of San Juan Unit 4, announced it will begin negotiations with the plant’s other owners to transfer their interests, so the city can keep the plant running beyond its scheduled retirement date.

However, PNM issued a statement that it remains committed to the plant’s closure in 2022 and has no plans to surrender its ownership and status as the plant’s operator. The plant is located near Farmington in San Juan County, N.M. Two of the plant’s four units were retired at the end of 2017.

The parent company of Public Service Co. of New Mexico said the anticipated shutdown is consistent with its integrated resource plan and the IRPs of three of the other plant owners. Fortis Inc. subsidiary Tucson Electric Power Co. owns 50% of unit 1, which began operating in 1976. Along with Farmington, two other public power entities own small percentages of unit 4, which began operating in 1982.

“PNM will continue to work with the other four San Juan Generating Station owners in accordance with their agreements to plan for a shutdown of the coal plant in 2022, subject to necessary regulatory approvals,” the company said.

More ($): N.M. town claims it has deal to keep San Juan coal plant running

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