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News roundup: Extenders debate moves to June, Georgia buys into wind, Vestas adding jobs

News roundup: Extenders debate moves to June, Georgia buys into wind, Vestas adding jobs

News surrounding the PTC and extenders legislation continues to flow in, along with a great story on Georgia’s first wind power purchases, and Vestas’s decision to add jobs after a big new order

As Senate members on both sides of the aisle work to negotiate amendments to the EXPIRE Act, which includes the PTC, action on the legislation could be pushed back until June. National Journal:

  • Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden is continuing to speak with Republicans about a list of possible amendments for the bipartisan tax-extenders package…
  • The committee's extenders package stalled on the floor last week when Republicans blocked Majority Leader Harry Reid's cloture motion to end debate. They cited Reid's repeated efforts to fill the amendment tree, thereby blocking them from offering amendments.
  • Reid said he remains open to amendments, but rejected any measures that would touch the Affordable Care Act, like one offered last week by Republican Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania that would repeal the medical-device tax included in the law.

Georgia regulators approved Georgia Power Company’s request to buy the state’s very first slice of wind power. Atlanta Business Chronicle:

  • Georgia energy regulators Tuesday unanimously approved Georgia Power Co.’s first foray into wind energy.
  • The state Public Service Commission signed off on the Atlanta-based utility’s plan to buy 250 megawatts of power produced by two wind farms in Oklahoma, enough electricity to run more than 50,000 homes. Texas-based EDP Renewables North America is offering the wind energy to Georgia Power at a rate that is below avoided cost, less expensive that other forms of electric generation already on the grid, making the purchase a good deal for the utility’s shareholders and customers.
  • Environmental advocates, who have long urged Georgia Power to invest more in developing renewable energy, welcomed Tuesday’s vote.

Vestas, having just received a big order from a new wind project in Maine, will be needing new workers in its Colorado facilities. Denver Business Journal:

  • Vestas Wind Systems said Monday it has a firm order for 48 wind-power turbines for use at a $369 million wind project near Oakfield, Maine.
  • In the same announcement, Vestas said its Colorado factories "are expected to be involved in the manufacturing for this project," and reiterated its plans to hire hundreds more workers for the Colorado plants.
  • In Monday's announcement, Vestas said that "to meet customer demand, Vestas is adding more workers at three of its Colorado factories — the blade factory in Windsor as well as the blade and nacelle factories in Brighton. Vestas is recruiting now and expects to add hundreds of production workers in the first half of 2014 in Windsor and Brighton, primarily at the two blade factories."

Be sure to check out Monday’s news roundup: Maryland wind wins reprieve, Wyden brings extenders back to the table, White House takes on 111(d)

Sources:

Michael Catalini, “Tax-Extenders Bill Remains Snagged Over Amendments.” National Journal. 20 May 2014.

Dave Williams, “Regulators OK Georgia Power wind energy purchase.” Atlanta Business Chronicle. 20 May 2014.

Mark Harden, “Vestas gets order for 48 turbines for Maine wind project; will add Colorado workers.” Denver Business Journal. 19 May 2014.

 

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