Eversheds Sutherland Coop Law Blog
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4 Rivers Electric Cooperative to Develop Sun Farm

Twelve Kansas electric coops, including 4 Rivers Electric Cooperative, are partnering to develop 800 miles of sun farms across the state. All systems installed will be sized in the 1 MW range and contracted through a 25-year power purchase agreement.
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FERC Urged to Reject Objections to Small Utility Opt-in Mechanism

In September, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved Order No. 222, which enables distributed energy resource aggregators to participate alongside traditional resources in the regional organized wholesale markets through aggregations. The American Public Power Association and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association are now urging FERC to reject objections to the small utility “opt-in” mechanism.
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Colorado Governor Joins Tri-State to Announce Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals

Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association (Tri-State) and Colorado Governor Jared Polis recently announced Tri-State will be submitting a “preferred scenario” to reduce emissions associated with its wholesale electricity sales in Colorado by 80% by 2030. With the support of its members and board of directors, Tri-State will put forward this preferred scenario in its Electric Resource Plan, which will be filed with the Colorado Public Utilities Commission on December 1, 2020.
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North Carolina Coops Use Hog Waste to Power Microgrids

A new project by North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives is utilizing methane gas from hog waste to generate electricity. Microgrids using the waste have been able to produce enough electricity to power at least 28 homes for several hours.
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Southwest Pool Power Considering Westward Expansion

Regional transmission operator Southwest Pool Power (SPP) announced interest in a western state expansion after a recent study found the move would produce $49 million a year in savings. If membership is pursued, Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Deseret Power Electric Cooperative and Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, amongst others, could become the first members to place facilities in the Western Interconnection under SPP’s Open Access Transmission Tariff.
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South Carolina Coop to Add Solar Energy to Resource Portfolio

Central Electric Power Cooperative, a South Carolina electric cooperative, recently announced intention to obtain as much as 363 MW of solar generating capacity through power purchase agreements with independent solar developers. Central Electric Power Cooperative is coordinating with Santee Cooper in a joint request for proposals to procure up to 500 MW of solar generation capacity, but it will be pursuing its own separate power purchase agreements with solar developers for its pro rata share of the procurement.
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What Biden’s Victory Means for Electric Cooperatives

Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential race sets the stage for potentially sweeping environmental policy changes. However, his planned policy agenda would be muted by what now looks to be a divided Congress, with a Republican-led Senate and a diminished Democratic majority in the House. In the near term, Biden is expected to push for a broad economic stimulus plan shortly after he takes office in January, presenting opportunities for NRECA to secure more pandemic relief for coops and their consumer-members. Over the longer term, electric coops will work to shape a $2 trillion environmental...
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Basin Electric Cooperative Sees Challenging Year in 2020; Load Returning

Paul Sukut, General Manager of Basin Electric Power Cooperative, said that while 2020 has been a challenging year, the pre-COVID-19 load is slowly returning. To further that growth, Basin is working on finding new sources of power that are low-carbon or no carbon emissions, including solar power and wind turbines.
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USDA Approves $3.1 Billion in Loans to Coops

As part of its latest round of Electric Loan Program awards, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved $3.1 billion in rural infrastructure loans for 45 electric cooperatives. The loans will go to projects in 25 states to upgrade or build transmission and distribution lines and to develop smart grid technology and digital communications to help detect and respond to outages.
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Congressmen Introduce Bill to Support Electric Cooperatives

Congressman Neal Dunn, M.D. (Florida-02) and Congressman Darren Soto (Florida-09) introduced the FEMA Loan Interest Payment Relief Act (H.R. 8701) requiring the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to reimburse local governments and electric cooperatives for interest incurred on loans used to restore essential functions after natural disasters. The interest paid on emergency loans is often a cost passed on to taxpayers and ratepayers alike.
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Pedernales Electric Cooperative Signs 100-MW PPA on Texas Wind Project

EDF Renewables North America and Pedernales Electric Cooperative, the largest distribution electric cooperative in the United States, signed a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) for a 100-MW share of King Creek 1 Wind Project. The project will consist of 47 wind turbine generators and construction is expected to start by the end of 2020. The project will create approximately 300 construction-related jobs during its peak and will benefit the local community over its operating life through land lease, tax and other payments.
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190 Electric Coops Qualify to Bid at FCC’s $16 Billion Broadband Auction

About 190 electric cooperatives have qualified to compete for up to $16 billion in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) largest reverse auction to fund broadband internet for unserved areas across the country. Winning bidders will receive funds over a 10-year period to deploy broadband to unserved census blocks identified by the FCC.
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The Georgia Solution: a Plan to Spur Broadband Deployment

The Georgia Solution, which was filed with the Georgia Public Service Commission as part of a rate case that involves fees that cable companies would pay to connect to the electric cooperatives’ utility poles, is aimed at encouraging rural broadband deployments by cable companies and other providers. There are two key parts to the Georgia Solution — the One Buck Deal and the Georgia One-Touch-Make-Ready Program.
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Gas South Plans to Acquire Infinite Energy

Gas South, a Cobb County, Georgia-based natural gas marketer and a subsidiary of electric cooperative Cobb EMC, is planning to acquire Infinite Energy, based in Gainesville, Florida. The headquarters for Gas South will remain in Cobb County, where the business employs about 240 people, but the company said it would retain a presence in Gainesville, Florida, where most of Infinite’s 300 employees are located.
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