Author Archive: Sandy Buchanan

Executive Director Sandy Buchanan has worked on a variety of energy issues involving coal, nuclear, utilities, renewables, and energy efficiency since the 1980s. She served as executive director of Ohio Citizen Action for 20 years before joining IEEFA in 2013.

IEEFA Update: FirstEnergy, on Thin Ice, Walks Away From a Half Million Ohio Households in Hopes of Saving Itself

A Break with the Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council Is the Latest Sign, Among Many, That a Poorly Run Utility Is on the Ropes

FirstEnergy’s financial tailspin took a spectacular turn late last month when the company abruptly cancelled the three remaining years of a nine-year contract to supply electricity to the Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council (NOPEC), a group that provides power to 500,000 customers. What’s happening here in Ohio, in brief, is that FirstEnergy’s bad business decisions […]

November 8, 2016 Read More →

IEEFA Asia: At a Crossroads, and Where Much of the Energy-Transition Action Is

Announcing the Appointment of Four New Energy Data Analysts Focusing on Indonesia, the Philippines, China, India, Bangladesh, and Australia

Asia, like the rest of the world, is at an energy-policy crossroads. Nowhere is this more evident than in electricity markets, where entire countries are grappling now with which fork to take: the one that loops back to the past or the one that leads to modernization and sustainability. At issue in the Philippines, for […]

September 30, 2016 Read More →

Utah’s Oakland Coal-Export Folly Sunk by Community Opposition and Market Forces

Bell Tolls for a Controversial Proposal That Created Political Fanfare in Two States

A sketchy deal that would have led to construction of a new seaside terminal in Oakland, California, to export coal from Utah—the focus of great political fanfare in both states just a year ago—looks like it’s now dead for good. Public opposition to the project, and exposure of political machinations that didn’t pass the smell […]

September 2, 2016 Read More →

IEEFA Wyoming: Bid to Export ‘Clean Coal’ to Japan Rings False

The U.S. Has Squandered Far Too Much Already on Research That Leads Nowhere

It’s no secret that the U.S. coal industry’s hopes of revival by exporting its product to Asia via West Coast ports—what Platts has called an “export or die” strategy—have been dashed by the structural decline in global coal markets.  That’s why Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead’s recent announcement that a new “clean coal” technology partnership between […]

IEEFA Cleveland: The Lights Are on but the Bills Are Too Damn High

With Respect to Utility Companies, a Former Mayor Said It Best: ‘If You Do Not Own Them, They Will in Time Own You.’

It’s been a remarkably eventful summer to be a Clevelander—from the joyous celebration of more than a million people at the Cleveland Cavaliers’ NBA victory parade in June to the who-knows-what-to-expect Republican National Convention events in the city this week. Cleveland did a lot of sprucing up to get ready for the RNC, including renovations […]

Institutional Investors Are Walking Away From Ohio Utility Companies That Insist on Coal

Hundreds of Millions of Dollars in Divestment From One Fund Alone

Utilities in Ohio and West Virginia clinging stubbornly to coal-fired power plants for electricity generation are finding the strategy backfiring in a way they might not have anticipated. Some of the world’s biggest investors are saying no thank you to enterprises so deeply—and dangerously—attached to coal. They include Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global, or GPFG, […]

April 22, 2016 Read More →

Data Bite: The Shrinking U.S. Coal-Fired Electricity Map; Here’s a Snapshot From Ohio

A Decline to 59 Percent of Power Generation in 2015 from 82 Percent in 2010

Where better to get a picture of the coal industry’s rapidly declining share of the electric generation pie in the U.S. than Ohio, a battleground state for energy issues?   Coal historically has made up the lion’s share of electricity generation in Ohio, and the coal industry has wielded the political clout to match. Even […]

IEEFA Energy Finance 2016: Fast-Moving Markets Signal More Change Ahead

The Decline of Coal, the Rise of Renewables, the Politics of Fuel, the Momentum Toward Divestiture …

Energy markets are changing so fast these days that they bring an inundation of fresh headlines. Peabody Energy, the world’s largest private sector coal company, is said to be teetering on the precipice of bankruptcy, a development of hugely symbolic importance; China continues its trend toward less reliance on coal, further weakening global coal markets; […]

March 14, 2016 Read More →

FirstEnergy’s Scheme to Protect Aging Power Plants in Ohio Will Cost Ratepayers $4 Billion

A Utility Company’s Subsidy Plan Ignores the New Energy Economy

We’ve published a report today that outlines in fresh detail how the proposed bailout of the Ohio utility giant FirstEnergy is a raw deal for ratepayers. Our report, “A $4 Billion Bailout in the Buckeye State,” concludes that the FirstEnergy scheme, if approved by the Pubic Utility Commission of Ohio, would cost ratepayers across northern […]

February 9, 2016 Read More →

Groundswell in Ohio Against FirstEnergy and AEP Bailouts (With More to Come)

A Fierce Backlash Over Plans That Would Cost Ratepayers for Years to Come; IEEFA Is Out With a New Study Next Week

Opposition to FirstEnergy’s campaign to get Ohio regulators and ratepayers to save several struggling coal and nuclear plants has gained steam in the Buckeye State, where questions mount over who stands to benefit from the bailout. Ohio deregulated electricity 15 years ago as utilities saw such change as the best way to make money. Now […]

February 2, 2016 Read More →