March 8, 2016 Read More →

SNL: U.S. Utility Companies to Retire Additional 2GW in Coal-Fired Electricity Generation by 2021

Dan Lowrey and Garrett Devine for SNL:

Since S&P Global Market Intelligence’s last analysis of coal plant retirement data in September 2015, an additional almost 2 GW of coal capacity has been earmarked as scheduled or completed coal capacity retirement through 2020. These additional units are mostly located outside an ISO or RTO and nearly half are located in the Western Electricity Coordinating Council, or WECC.

Among the coal capacity begin retired in WECC are two units at the San Juan Generation Station located in New Mexico and operated by Public Service Co. of New Mexico. The company recently won approval of the New Mexico Regulation Commission to retire units 2 and 3 at the plant, which will reduce PNM’s share of coal-fired generating capacity by 221 MW from 783 MW to 562 MW.

WECC has the most renewable power capacity scheduled to come online in 2016, including 10.3 GW of solar and 1.2 GW of wind as utilities there look to meet renewable portfolio standards and replace retired coal capacity.

Among the nation’s ISO and RTOs, PJM Interconnection LLC again bore the brunt of 2015 retirements and conversions, as more than 7.9 GW of operating capacity was retired. PJM expects to retire another 477 MW of coal capacity in 2016. Midcontinent Independent System Operator Inc. has the most coal-fired capacity scheduled to retire in 2016 at about 2.2 GW.

Full article ($) with charts and maps: Coal plant retirements reached zenith in 2015, but more to come

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