“We don’t even have gas on the horizon right now; it’s all wind and solar.”
– Charles Patton, American Electric Power executive vice president of external affairs, on the utility’s moves toward clean energy
“It’s purely economic. The plant guys tried everything they could to keep it open, but it was a money loser. In a competitive market, you’ve got to take these steps. This is a coal plant operating in a market that’s flooded with cheap natural gas.”
– Allan Koenig, a spokesman for parent company of Luminant, owner of one of Texas’ largest coal plants that is being shut down
“It is really about the economics. From the company’s perspective, this plan is a response to our customers”
– David Eves, President for Xcel Energy in Colorado, on plans to retire two coal-fired power plants.
“While it appears $4.5 billion is a big number, if you built a central-station generation facility like a coal unit or something like that, it would be as big or bigger, but much more risky.”
– American Electric Power CEO Nick Akins, commenting on his company’s plans to spend $4.5 billion acquiring an 800-turbine Oklahoma wind project, the biggest in the United States.
“If Duke and Southern Co. couldn’t do it, who is the Navajo Nation going to find who can do it? There’s no evidence that this can be done economically or reliably.”
– David Schlissel, director of resource planning analysis at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, reacting to statements by Navajo tribal officials that they are considering building a coal gasification plant on the site of Navajo Generating Station after it is decommissioned in 2019.
Trying to keep aging coal and nuclear plants operating “may end up raising rather than lowering the average cost of wholesale electricity for many customers.”
– from a leaked draft of a politically motivated analysis commissioned by Energy Secretary Rick Perry that was supposed to question whether renewable energy policies or regulations have harmed grid reliability and accelerated the retirement of coal and nuclear plants, but which actually showed the opposite to be true.
“Donald Trump has used the phrase ‘clean coal’ probably a thousand times, and it doesn’t exist in the real world right now.”
– Billionaire Tom Steyer in an interview on Bloomberg TV
“None of our people are ever going to be building a coal plant again. It’s devoid of reality.”
– an unidentified utility executive reacting to meetings between power sector leaders and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt about the future of the Clean Power Plan and utilities’ desire to see some sort of carbon regulation rather than having the Trump Administration simply erase the CPP.
“Because of the low natural gas prices and expanded renewable generating capacity, wholesale electric market prices over recent years have frequently been too low to merit economic dispatch of coal generating capacity.”
– From the 20-year integrated resource plan filed by Boise, Idaho-based Idaho Power with the state’s Public Utilities Commission. The utility’s plans include retiring its shares in at least three coal-burning power plants throughout the West.
“Coal is now largely irrelevant in New England.”
– Gordon van Welie, president and CEO of ISO New England in a story about grid reliability remaining stable even as coal continues to fall off as a baseload electricity generating resource.
The Mississippi Pubic Service Commission requests a “solution that eliminates ratepayer risk for unproven technology and assures no rate increase.”
– Mississippi Public Service Commission in a news release directed at Southern Co. subsidiary Mississippi Power, in which it gave the utility 45 days to abandon its beleaguered and massively over-budget seven-year, $7.5 billion effort to construct a carbon-capture-and-storage coal-burning power plant.
“Coal’s competitive advantage is fast evaporating. It cannot compete with renewables on cost, and storage and smart management of the grid have made the need for new baseload redundant. Coal is yesterday’s technology – the only thing new coal has going for it is inertia.”
– Kobad Bhavnagri, the lead author of Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s New Energy Outlook 2017 in Asia-Pacific report.
“I’ve not spoken to a single utility that’s truly holding on to a future of more coal.”
– Brian Janous, who directs energy strategy at Microsoft, quoted in a story about the effect that Fortune 500 companies are having on the electricity sector as they commit to running their businesses on 100 percent renewable energy and pressure utilities to provide them the sources to do so.