Coal Age

MAY 2019

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Page 14 of 43

May 2019 13 u.s. news continued making it one of the newest coal plants in the United States. Whether any of its recommenda- tions will be approved anytime soon or ever rests in part on the response of city residents to the report, according to Amber Sabin, spokesman for Spring- field City, Water Light and Power. The muni planned to hold a May 20 open house to receive public com- ments and review the report. A final recommendation is expected before the end of this year. TEA recommends the retirement of Dallman Units 1 and 2, built in the late 1960s and early 1970s and rated at 61 MW apiece, and 172-MW Unit 3, built in 1978, as possibly as early as 2020. Sabin said while that might be a possibility for the two smaller, older units, it is unlikely to be the case for Unit 3, still a major contributor to the city's generation. According to the report, Units 1 and 2 account for about 19% of Dall- man's overall power and are not need- ed for capacity. "Transmission upgrades would be needed," she said, adding some of Unit 3's facilities are shared with Unit 4. "We know we would need more time to retire Unit 3" because there also are Midcontinent-dependent System Operator (MISO) technical require- ments to address with closing Unit 3, she said. MISO is a regional grid oper- ator based in Carmel, Indiana. TEA said it would cost the city about $210 million to maintain Unit 3 over the next 20 years. CWLP buys about 1.2 million tons of steam coal from Arch Coal Inc.'s Vi- per underground mine about 20 miles away in Sangamon County at a price of $35.90/g. The existing deal, signed two years ago, runs through 2020. Xcel Energy Will End Coal Use in Upper Midwest Xcel Energy announced plans to retire its last two coal plants in the Upper Mid- west a decade earlier than scheduled. The acceleration of the coal closures is another milestone in the company's clean energy transition that includes expanding wind and solar, using clean- er natural gas and operating its car- bon-free Monticello nuclear plant until at least 2040, the company said. The plan outlines a path to make the transition while ensuring reliabil- ity and keeping costs low for custom- ers. As part of this plan, the compa- ny has reached an agreement with a coalition of environmental and labor organizations on key elements of the plan relating to its coal, solar and nat- ural gas plans. These plans are part of the proposed Upper Midwest Energy Plan, which the company will submit for approval to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission in July. If approved, the plan would lead to a more than 80% reduction in carbon emissions in the region by 2030, com- pared to 2005, a key stepping stone to- ward the company achieving its vision to provide customers 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050. "This is a significant step forward as we are on track to reduce carbon emissions more than 80% by 2030 and transform the way we deliver energy to our customers," said Chris Clark, president, Xcel Energy – Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota. "Accel- erating the closure of our coal plants and leading this clean energy transition would not be possible without the dedication and support of our key stakeholders. We thank them for their work to put us on a path to de- liver 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050." Cloud Peak Energy Files for Chapter 11 Cloud Peak Energy announced on May 10 it filed voluntary peti- tions under Chapter 11 in the U.S. Bank- ruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. The company intends to continue a marketing process for all of its assets and expects its mines to continue op- erating throughout the process. "Over the past several months, Cloud Peak Energy has thoroughly evaluated strategic alternatives to address the challenging market con- ditions in our industry," said Colin Marshall, president and CEO of Cloud Peak Energy. "We believe, at this time, that a sale process in Chapter 11 will provide the best opportunity to maxi- mize value for Cloud Peak Energy." In conjunction with the filing, and subject to court approval, Cloud Peak Energy has received a commitment for approximately $35 million in debt- or-in-possession (DIP) financing from some of the company's prepetition se- cured noteholders. It said it expects $10 million of the total DIP financing to be available on an interim basis. The DIP financing, combined with the compa- ny's cash on hand and funds generated from ongoing operations, are expected to provide sufficient liquidity to contin- ue operating during the sale process. Headquartered in Wyoming, Cloud Peak Energy operates the Antelope and Cordero Rojo mines, located in Wyoming, and the Spring Creek mine, which is located in Montana. In 2018, Cloud Peak Energy sold approximately 50 million tons. Recovering from a spoil failure last year and other adverse mining conditions, Cloud Peak Energy is considering its options.

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