January 18, 2019 Read More →

S&P: Another 8GW of coal capacity due to go offline in 2019

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):

More than 49,000 MW of new power generation capacity is expected to be added to the U.S. grid in 2019, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data. Accounting for capacity set to be retired, the U.S. should see a net gain of 40,823 MW.

Specifically, 49,420 MW are expected to come into service, and 8,597 MW that have received approval from needed regulatory authorities are expected to be retired. Another 2,216 MW of operating capacity is to be converted to another fuel source.

Coal-fired capacity accounts for 68% of the scheduled retirements, at 5,834 MW. This figure only includes retirements that have already received approval from regulatory bodies. Coal retirements in 2018 totaled about 11,800 MW. Another 2,216 MW of coal-fired capacity is expected to be converted to natural gas or other nonrenewable operations. This includes one of two 1,100-MW units at Duke Energy Corp. subsidiary Duke Energy Carolinas LLC’s Belews Creek plant in Stokes County, N.C. The unit is expected to start burning natural gas in place of coal in September. The second Belews Creek unit is due for conversion to gas in 2020.

Renewable and gas-fired capacity combine for the vast majority of scheduled capacity additions, though the largest single source of fuel for new capacity additions in 2019 is wind, with 22,447 MW, or 45% of all capacity additions. The largest wind facility under construction is the 500-MW Goodnight Wind Energy plant in Armstrong County, Texas. The plant, which is owned by FGE Power, is scheduled to become operational in two phases. Phase 1 totals 252 MW of capacity and is slated to go online in June, followed by the 248-MW Phase 2 in October.

Solar accounts for 22% of scheduled 2019 additions, totaling 11,050 MW. The largest solar project under construction is the 250-MW Phoebe Energy Project owned by Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. The plant is being built in Winkler County, Texas. The majority of the plant’s output is under contract with Shell Energy North America (US) LP, a power marketing subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell PLC.

More ($): US grid expected to add a net 40,800 MW of generating capacity in 2019

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