Energy

How Labor and Environmental Groups Are Finding Common Ground

Jul 4, 2016
John Stamets via Flickr

When you think of an environmental hero, a plumber might not be the first person who comes to mind. But this year, a union representing plumbers and pipefitters earned a “champion” award from a nationwide coalition of environmental and labor groups called the BlueGreen Alliance.

Duke Energy power lines, energy
Duke Energy

Ohioans could see a new charge in their electric bills as early as June, now that state regulators have approved plans by FirstEnergy and AEP to guarantee income for struggling coal plants. But while opponents are fighting the ruling, those utilities are touting the benefits.

Groups against the so-called coal plant bailout say the ruling from the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio gives AEP and FirstEnergy an unfair competitive advantage.

But AEP President, Pablo Vegas, says his utility needed the ability to charge customers more in order to stabilize costs.

Duke Energy / Flickr Creative Commons

Regulators have approved a pair of deals that allow FirstEnergy and AEP to impose short-term rate increases on electricity customers in Ohio to subsidize some older coal-fired and nuclear power plants.

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio unanimously passed the power purchase agreements for Akron-based FirstEnergy and Columbus-based AEP Thursday. Opponents are likely to challenge the decisions.

The companies submitted the latest versions of their plans to the commission in December.

New Proposal Aims To Derail Plans For Energy Rate Increase

Jan 14, 2016
Duke Energy power lines, energy
Duke Energy

Independent energy provider Dynegy's entrance into the the crowded Ohio energy market could affect competitors plans to raise rates. 

AEP and First Energy have asked state regulators to allow them to hike customers' bills to ensure energy production and guarantee income for their struggling coal plants through 2030. 

Texas-based Dynegy recently bought several coal and natural gas plants from Duke Energy. Now, the company says it can counter plans from AEP and FirstEnergy by offering the same amount of energy for $5 billion less.

Future Of Coal Debated In Columbus

Jan 7, 2016
Flickr Creative Commons user Bill Herndon

Who should be paying to keep power plants afloat that are inefficient and don’t do very well in the market—the utility company or its customers?

That's the question under hot debate in Columbus as major utility AEP fights to keep several of its coal plants open through 2030. 

My Renewable Electrons

Dec 28, 2015
Claudio Schwarz / Flickr Creative Commons

Nowadays it’s possible to choose where you get your electricity from by signing up for options including renewable energy.  Commentator and UD Professor Bob Brecha asks how we know if our electricity is really green.

After hearing one of my WYSO essays, a listener contacted me to ask what I thought about switching her electricity service to a “green” option, which is offered by various providers, such as DP&L.  But this question interests me because it tends to generate a lot of controversy.

Ohio’s Renewable Energy Backpedaling

Nov 9, 2015
Duke Energy / Flickr Creative Commons

The State of Ohio has had a good plan for encouraging renewable energy and energy efficiency.  But now the State legislature is threatening to roll back this future-oriented plan.  Commentator and University of Dayton professor Bob Brecha explains.

Why Some Big Businesses are Backing the Clean Power Plan

Oct 29, 2015
Staples is one of 300 companies that recently sent a letter to governors urging them to back the EPA's new plan to curb carbon dioxide emissions.
Mike Mozart / Flickr Creative Commons

Big businesses often oppose increased government regulations. But the Clean Power Plan—the Obama’s administration's attempt to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants—is drawing backers in the big box business world.

BP Restarts Part Of Indiana Oil Refinery After Repairs

Aug 25, 2015
gas pump
futureatlas.com / Flickr Creative Commons

BP says it has restarted a portion of a large Indiana oil refinery whose unplanned shutdown for repairs caused gasoline prices in the region to spike earlier this month.

BP issued a news release Tuesday saying it has safely restarted a large crude distillation unit at its refinery in Whiting, 15 miles southeast of Chicago, which had been shut down since Aug. 8 for unscheduled repair work.

BP says the restart of the unit is increasing the refinery's fuel production, with output ramping up over time.

Antioch College Farm Manager, Kat Christen, introduces a the farm's latest employees - sheep brought in to help with grounds maintenance under the solar arrays.
Jerry Kenney

Three conservation efforts taking place at Antioch College represent their long standing goal of becoming more sustainable. In this excerpt from WYSO Weekend, we highlight these efforts:

Up first, the college and Glen Helen Nature Preserve in Yellow Springs have secured a second land conservation easement that will forever protect 973 acres of the preserve. To get more details on the easement we spoke to Nick Boutis, Executive Director of the Glen Helen Ecology Institute.

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