The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission authorized a unit of PPL Corp., Allentown, Pa., to issue up to $900 million of debt securities. The PUC also approved a long-term energy supply contract under which PPL Electric Utilities will purchase electricity for its customers in Pennsylvania who do not select an alternate energy supplier. In June, PPL announced the results of a competitive bidding process in which PPL EnergyPlus, the corporation’s energy marketing and trading subsidiary, was selected to fill the energy supply requirements of PPL Electric Utilities from 2002-2009.
NRG Energy Inc., Minneapolis, Minn., said it priced a $500 million offering, $340 million of 6.75% senior notes due July 15, 2006, and $160 million of 8.625% notes due April 1, 2031. The offering was priced at 99.875 to yield 6.78% for the 5-year tranche and 103.343 to yield 8.318% for the 30-year tranche. The company said the proceeds will be used to repay all amounts outstanding under a revolving credit facility and for other corporate needs.
International Power PLC, London, said it completed acquisition of the 1,000 Mw coal-fired Rugeley power station from a unit of TXU Corp., Dallas, Tex. The Rugeley plant, located near Birmingham, England, was commissioned in 1970.
Wisconsin Gas, a unit of Wisconsin Energy Corp.; Milwaukee, Wis.; Northern Natural Gas (NNG), a unit of Enron Corp., Houston; and Guardian Pipeline reported that Wisconsin Gas has signed an agreement with NNG to purchase for $5 million the Eagle line, a nine mile, high pressure natural gas pipeline in Walworth and Waukesha counties, Wisconsin. The line will become part of the Wisconsin Gas distribution system and will interconnect with Guardian Pipeline as well as the NNG system. Guardian Pipeline is a partnership of CMS Energy, Dearborn, Mich.; Wisconsin Energy; and Viking Gas Transmission Co., a unit of Xcel Energy Inc., St. Paul, Minn.
InterGen, the electric power alliance between Royal Dutch/Shell Group and US engineering company Bechtel Corp., said the gas-fired 90 Mw Larkspur energy facility in San Diego, Calif., has begun operation. The Larkspur plant is one of two InterGen facilities that comprise the Wildflower energy project. Within the next 2 weeks, Wildflower Energy’s 135 Mw Indigo Facility in Palm Springs will join Larkspur in operation, the company said.
The Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator Inc., Carmel, Ind. (MISO),said the North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) approved the electric grid operator’s security plan to act as regional security coordinator for its members. Approval as a NERC Security Coordinator moves the MISO significantly closer toward implementing the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Order 2000, which directs regional transmission organizations to be operating by Dec. 15, 2001.
El Paso Corp., Houston, said its wholly owned subsidiary, Golden Power Acquisition, LLC, purchased Ahlstrom Development Corp., an American subsidiary of A. Ahlstrom Corp. of Finland. The transaction gives El Paso an equity interest in five coal-fired power plants in California and Pennsylvania. The total production capacity of the projects being purchased is 420 Mw, of which El Paso’s net interest is 123 Mw.
Intermountain Gas Co., Boise, Ida., will be allowed to recover from its customers about $5.9 million of the $9.4 million revenue increase it requested, under an order issued by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission. The company originally sought to recover $27. 1 million, or a 12.9% increase. But a softening in wholesale prices led to a proposal from the company to decrease its original request to a 4.5% increase. The commission’s order results in an average per therm increase of 2.74%.
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission tentatively approved the request by Myers Gas Co. to increase rates by 22.11%. With the increase, the average residential bill will increase $78 annually, to $432 from $354. The company said the increase is needed to pay operating expenses and to provide a modest return to the owner.
The Michigan Public Service Commission is seeking public comment on proposed electric distribution system performance standards for Michigan’s electric utilities. The proposed standards address a number of issues, including utility reporting requirements, electric outage, and safety measurements and customer relations. Under the proposed standards, utilities that fail to meet minimum standards for restoring power after an outage will be required to give affected customers credits.
Calpine Corp., San Jose, Calif., said the US Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California approved the agreement authorizing Pacific Gas & Electric Co. to assume Calpine’s modified qualifying facility contracts. Under the agreement, Calpine continues to receive its contractual capacity payments plus a 5-year fixed energy price component of 5.37¢/kw-hr.