The Independent Oil and Gas Association of West Virginia has intervened at the WV PSC in the FirstEnergy plan to dump the rest of its Harrison Power Station on WV rate payers. Pam Kasey over at Grounded quotes IOGA President Dennis Xander saying:
“You’re going to see a whole bunch of spreadsheets come out where people are going to calculate what the cost per kilowatt-hour would be under various scenarios,” he predicted from long experience. “By intervening, we want to make sure whatever information the commission gets is right.”
Xander apparently hasn’t read my post here about how FirstEnergy has already misrepresented the ability of gas fired generation to resolve Mon Power’s capacity shortage. FirstEnergy rigged its capacity factor calculations for both coal (too high) and gas (too low) in its bogus “resource plan” that it submitted to the PSC in August to provide the smokescreen for its Harrison coal dump plan.
The best solution to Mon Power’s capacity shortage is quite likely a combination of energy efficiency investments to reduce the need in the first place, expanded CHP and solar power incentives, purchases of electricity from PJM markets, new combined cycle natural gas plants and the possible transfer of a much smaller percentage of the Harrison plant from Allegheny Supply Company to Mon Power. This hybrid solution allows for fine tuning and flexibility as fuel price differentials change and market risk shifts. Instead of betting the farm on FirstEnergy’s coal burning dinosaur, WV rate payers would have a portfolio of solutions to expand or contract to meet power needs in the most cost effective way.
Will IOGA push for these kinds of smart solutions, or will they prove to be a narrow minded interest group looking to suck up to Big Daddy Coal? Stay tuned.