April 5, 2016 Read More →

SNL: More U.S. Coal-Plant Retirements to Come

Dan Lowrey and Garrett Devine for SNL:

During 2015, a wave of coal plant retirements and a surge in natural gas usage by utilities brought gas nearly even with coal as the nation’s leading fuel for power generation. Facing implementation of the U.S. EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standards, utilities shuttered nearly 15 GW in coal-burning capacity during the year as they continue moving away from the fuel, covert units to burn cheap gas and bring on renewable capacity.

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.

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.

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

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