Electric Power news briefs, January 5

Allegheny Energy Supply Co. LLC ... Tennessee Valley Authority ... American Electric Power Co. Inc. ... Environmental Elements Corp. ... PSEG Nuclear LLC ... PECO Energy Co. ... Delmarva Power & Light Co. ... Detroit Edison Co. ... Juniper Generation LLC ... CE Generation LLC ... Caithness Coso Funding Corp. ... MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co. ... El Paso Merchant Energy Co. ... Philadelphia Gas Works ... Siemens Westinghouse Power Corp. ... MDU Resources Group Inc.


Allegheny Energy Inc. reported its unregulated generation subsidiary, Allegheny Energy Supply Co. LLC, plans to construct a $400 million, 630 Mw natural gas-fired merchant generating facility in St. Joseph County, Ind. Construction on the combustion turbine facility will begin in 2002 and is expected to be completed in two stages. Two 44 Mw simple cycle combustion turbines will be constructed first, followed by the addition of 542 Mw of combined cycle capacity in 2005. When completed, the facility will allow Allegheny Energy Supply to sell additional generation into the East Central Area Reliability Region.

Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) reported breaking a winter record for power generation Jan. 3 producing 27,015 Mw of electricity. The peak demand occurred at 8 a.m. EST, when the average temperature in the Tennessee Valley was 14� F. The previous high winter demand of 26,719 Mw occurred Dec. 20, 2000. The TVA power system�s all-time high for electricity generation was 29,344 Mw Aug. 17, 2000.

American Electric Power Co. Inc. (AEP) and Environmental Elements Corp.(EEC) reported an agreement under which EEC will serve as exclusive supplier of urea-to-ammonia systems for AEP�s generating fleet should the company decide to proceed with additional installations of the ammonia-on-demand technology. AEP recently said it will employ the technology to achieve federally mandated reductions in nitrogen oxide emissions at the company's 1,300 Mw Gen. James M. Gavin power plant at Cheshire, Ohio.

PSEG Nuclear LLC and PECO Energy Co. (PECO) completed the $9.2 million purchase of interests in two nuclear power plants from Delmarva Power & Light Co., a unit of Conectiv. As a result of the sale, the following interests in nuclear generation assets, comprising all of Delmarva's nuclear interests, were transferred: a 7.51% interest (164 Mw) in the Peach Bottom Units 2 and 3 was sold in equal shares to co-owners PSEG and PECO, and a 7.41% interest (167 Mw) in the Salem nuclear generation station Units 1 and 2 was sold to PSEG Nuclear, an indirect subsidiary of Public Service Enterprise Group Inc.

The Michigan Public Service Commission (PSC) issued a final order in Detroit Edison Co.'s request to securitize $1.77 billion, a refinancing that will be reflected in a 5% rate reduction for customers in Southeast Michigan. Detroit Edison on Nov. 22 filed a request for clarification of various issues in the PSC's initial Nov. 2 order authorizing securitization. The PSC's final order addresses how the benefits of securitization savings will be initiated. Detroit Edison said it accepted conditions of the order and, barring an appeal, intends to issue the bonds by the end of the first quarter.

Fitch said it placed the 'BBB-' rating of Juniper Generation LLC's $105 million senior secured bonds due 2010 on Rating Watch Negative. Bondholders of Juniper Generation mainly rely on the equity distributions from a portfolio of 10 generation assets. The output from 9 of these 10 assets is sold under power purchase agreements with Pacific Gas and Electric Co (PGE). The output from the remaining asset is sold under a power purchase agreement with Southern California Edison Co (SCE). Juniper Generation is owned indirectly by El Paso Energy Corp. and Limestone Electron. Fitch has placed the `BBB' rating of CE Generation LLC's $400 million secured bonds due 2018 on Rating Watch Negative. Bondholders of CE Generation rely on the equity distributions from a portfolio of 14 generation assets. The output from eight of these assets is sold under power purchase agreements with SCE. CE Generation LLC is a holding company created solely to issue the secured bonds and hold the capital stock of the equity members. As of Oct. 31, 2000, the equity member accounts were held 50-50 by MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co. and El Paso Merchant Energy Co. Fitch has placed a Rating Watch Negative status on the ratings of Caithness Coso Funding Corp.'s $413 million senior secured note issue. Caithness Coso, through three partnerships, sells 100% of the power generated from three 80 Mw geothermal power projects to SCE under long-term power purchase agreements. Caithness is one of two original sponsors of the Coso partnerships and in 1999 acquired MidAmerican Energy Holdings' interest in Coso to become the sole owner of the partnerships. Fitch said its rating action reflects the greatly reduced financial strength and credit quality of SCE and PGE. Thursday, Fitch lowered the ratings of both SCE and PGE to well below investment grade because of their continuing liquidity depletion.

Philadelphia Gas Works (PGW) filed a request for a $65 million base rate increase effective March 6, subject to approval by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC). The proposed increase will raise the typical residential heat customer's bill from to $98 from $88/month. Commercial and industrial customers rates would rise 10%. The rate application replaces a $52 million interim filing that PGW made in August 2000.

Siemens Westinghouse Power Corp. reported the 100 kw solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) cogeneration system located in Westervoort, the Netherlands, successfully completed its contracted 2-year operating period. The SOFC system was supplied to EDB/ELSAM, a consortium of Dutch and Danish utilities, by Siemens Westinghouse in late 1997. Early in 2001 the system will be moved to a new site for continued operation. After its initial startup at Westervoort, the system operated for 4,035 hours before being returned to Pittsburgh for modifications. The rebuilt module was installed and started up in March 1999 and has since accumulated nearly 12,600 hours of operation, the company reported. At the point of shutdown, the unit was operating an electrical efficiency of over 46%.

MDU Resources Group Inc. said it acquired Capital Electric Line Builders Inc. and Capital Electric Construction Co. Inc. Capital Electric, Kansas, Mo., is a privately held diversified electrical contracting operation. MDU said the acquisition is expected to add to the earnings per share. Financial details were not disclosed.

The Tennessee Valley Authority said it will take public comment Jan. 8 on a proposal to build a 340 Mw natural gas-fired power plant in Kemper County to help meet peak demand. TVA expects to issue a final decision on the plant in spring 2001.

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