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  1. Coal News: NC lawmakers float easing Duke Energy's coal ash cleanup

      RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina legislators offered Duke Energy a cheaper alternative to excavating toxic coal ash from all its unlined pits, but neighbors and environmentalists cried foul after the deal was unveiled Tuesday. A state Senate committee quickly advanced legislation allowing lower-cost alternatives to closing pits at half of Duke Energy's 14 coal plants, including drying out the watery pits and closing them in place. Pits at the company's other seven North Carolina coal plants were already slated for excavation under court orders of a 2014 state law passed months after an ash spill coated 70 miles of the Dan River in a toxic sludge. The full Senate approved the proposal with a 44-4 vote Tuesday evening and sent it to the House. Gov. Pat McCrory's environmental agency spent months evaluating health, safety and other factors risks before concluding in May that the residues left after decades of burning coal for power must be removed by 2024. But the Department of Environmental Quality and the nation's largest electricity company both said they wanted lawmakers to change state law to allow less-costly options. Duke Energy has promised it will push to recover cleanup costs through higher power bills. The company originally estimated costs at about $10 billion to excavate and move the ash from all its pits. The proposed legislative changes could allow Duke Energy to leave the ash in place if it supplies drinking water by October 2018 to plant neighbors who fear their water wells are polluted by arsenic, chromium and other hazardous elements. The company also must shore up iffy dams around some pits. The prospect of having her water well replaced by a new municipal water line doesn't satisfy Amy Brown of Belmont, whose home is less than a quarter-mile from the company's nearly 60-year-old Allen power plant. Coal ash contaminants will continue leaking from the pits into groundwater streams below them years into the future, Brown said. "We shouldn't have to choose between clean water and cleanup," Brown said. "This is unacceptable to put your toxic waste in the ground and leave it there." Environmentalists blasted the legislation as bailing out Duke Energy and scrapping months of public input after DEQ's conclusion was opposed by the energy giant that employed McCrory for nearly 30 years. "What is the overall impact going to be of those coal ash pits on groundwater and surface water? That's not going to be addressed now because of this bill," Sierra Club spokesman Dustin Chicurel-Bayard said. Duke Energy denies its coal ash is contaminating underground water supplies or the rivers along which its power plants were built. "Our science and engineering still doesn't indicate a connection between our operations and the findings in neighbors' wells," company spokesman Jeff Brooks said. "If these provisions can provide that peace of mind and allow us the flexibility to be able to close basins in ways that protect the environment and protect pocket books, that's a positive outcome for us." The bill also would end a long-running battle between McCrory and legislators on coal ash cleanup oversight. Legislators created a commission in 2014 that would sign-off on cleanup plans proposed by DEQ, saying the second set of eyes was worthwhile because of McCrory's long ties Duke Energy. McCrory fought lawmakers in court and the state Supreme Court ruled the General Assembly couldn't appoint most of the commission's members. McCrory vetoed a second attempt to create the commission last month.

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    Wed, 29 Jun 2016

  2. GE Power Unveils Digital Power Plant for Steam

    GE today unveiled its Digital Power Plant for Steam at the Minds + Machines event in Paris, France. The product represents a suite of technologies designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve efficiency ratings at coal-fired facilities.

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    Tue, 14 Jun 2016

  3. Korean company signs agreement to build hydro, coal plants in Indonesia

    Korea Midland Power Co. (KOMIPO) signed a memorandum of understanding with the Indonesian government to build a hydro and a coal plant in Indonesia, according to Korea IT Times.

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    Tue, 17 May 2016

  4. NEI's Fertel Warns More Premature Nuclear Retirements on the Way

    Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and the head of the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) agreed May 19 that premature retirement of more nuclear reactors would likely negate carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) reductions from closing old coal plants .

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    Mon, 23 May 2016

  1. Sierra Club wants to push coal out of Lansing, Michigan

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    Thu, 26 May 2016

  2. AE&E Group wins EUR25m coal plant upgrade deal in Bosnia-Herzegovina

    Austria's AE&E Group has secured an order for modernisation of the Unit 6 steam generator at Bosnia-Herzegovina's Kakanj coal fired power station, 50km north of Sarajevo.

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    Fri, 27 Nov 2009

  3. EIA: Southern States Lead Growth in Biomass Electricity Generation

    Biomass electricity generation in the U.S. grew by 8 TWh in the last five years, according to a report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). The growth occurred across all sectors, expanding from 56 TWh in 2010 to 64 TWh in 2015. Last year, biomass electricity generation accounted ...

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    Fri, 27 May 2016

  4. Southern states lead growth in biomass energy electricity generation

    Over the past five years, U.S. electricity generation from biomass across all sectors grew from 56 gigawatthours (GWh) in 2010 to 64 GWh in 2015. Much of this growth occurred in southern states such as Virginia, Florida, and Georgia.

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    Wed, 25 May 2016

  5. Xcel Energy sees less emissions, more renewable energy use

    In 2015, Xcel Energy’s mercury emissions declined 85 percent, while sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions declined 67 percent at its plants, since 2005 

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    Tue, 24 May 2016

  6. NEI warns more nuclear power plant retirements on the way

    Moniz said DOE is worried about losing carbon-free generation

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    Mon, 23 May 2016

  7. FERC, California officials address summer reliability concerns

    Utilities, the California ISO and others discussed efforts to address gas storage and grid reliability challenges in California this summer

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    Tue, 24 May 2016

  8. Solar Power News: Albuquerque weighs getting more power from solar sources

    New Mexico's largest city could be joining dozens of other communities around the nation that have set goals to get more of their electricity from renewable resources.

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    Mon, 16 May 2016

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