U.S. Plan to Aid Coal and Nuclear Plants Gets a Bipartisan Thumbs Down From Past Regulators FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Washington Post;Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s bid to change regulations to help coal and nuclear power plants has run into unusually blunt opposition from a group of former regulators from both parties.Eight former members of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission — including five former chairmen — have filed a letter with the commission opposing Perry’s proposal that would give coal and nuclear plants credit for resilience so that they would have a better chance of beating solar, wind and natural gas competitors.The former commissioners said that Perry was seeking to reverse a quarter century of FERC reforms that have created a marketplace for electric power generators and that many of the coal plants he is aiming to help have no advantage when it comes to reliability.“His focus is clearly coal and there are a lot of dirty coal plants that are not competitive in today’s energy markets,” Elizabeth Moler, a former FERC chairwoman, former deputy energy secretary and former Exelon executive, said in an interview. “To me he’s effectively proposing to subsidize them and put a tax on consumers in doing so. It’s a tax in different clothing. It’s going to cost customers more money to run dirty old coal plants.”In early October, Perry made his proposal to FERC and asked for a decision within 60 days. He proposed that credit be given to power plants with 90-day fuel supplies on site so that they could operate during an emergency including extreme weather or a natural or man-made disaster.FERC is an independent agency, however, and some current members have indicated that the commission would make its own decision. Even one of President Trump’s nominees has stressed FERC’s independence. Robert F. Powelson, who was confirmed in August, said in a speech at the National Press Club on Oct. 16 that “the moment we put our thumbs on the scale is the moment we bastardize the process.” In an earlier speech on Oct. 4, Powelson said “we will not destroy the marketplace.”Over the past quarter century, FERC has helped create regional electricity grid operators with the ability to accept bids from power plants to supply electricity to the grid. The competition has attracted tens of billions of dollars of investment in natural gas and renewable power sources.The former commissioners’ letter to FERC said Perry’s proposal “would be a significant step backward from the Commission’s long and bipartisan evolution to transparent, open, competitive wholesale markets” and that it “would instead disrupt decades of substantial investment made in the modern electric power system, raise costs for customers, and do so in a manner directly counter to the Commission’s long experience.”The group wrote that “subsidizing resources so they do not retire would fundamentally distort markets. The subsidized resources would inevitably drive out the unsubsidized resources, and the subsidies would inevitably raise prices to customers.”It said that “investor confidence would evaporate and markets would tend to collapse. This loss of faith in markets would thereby undermine reliability.”Pat Wood III, who was chairman of FERC under President George W. Bush, said that “I understand the politics. I’m sympathetic.”But he said that the reliability Perry said he wanted to favor had more to do with transmission and distribution than it did with they type of fuel used.The group’s letter acknowledged that there are federal tax subsidies for every kind of fuel, but it said that “one step the Commission has never taken is to create or authorize on its own the kind of subsidy proposed here.”Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore), the ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, said Thursday that FERC should shelve the Perry proposal.“Arbitrarily propping up a dying industry goes against what the GOP has long claimed is its goal – an all-of-the-above energy strategy,” Wyden said in a statement. “This rule clearly picks winners and losers in energy resources, which robs taxpayers of the benefits of competitive markets.”More: Bipartisan group of former FERC commissioners rejects energy secretary’s bid to help coal plants
Burundi: the United Nations refugee agency has said that over 110- thousand people have fled Burundi over the past few weeks. The refugees are said to have crossed into Rwanda , Tanzania and the DRC. Outbreaks of malaria and cholera though have been recorded in some refugee camps. This has led to worries over whether the countries can cope with the influx. CCTV’s Leslie Mirungu with more.
“[Leonard leaving] wasn’t a surprise,” Lowry added. “I’m always happy for guys, especially a guy that helped do something fantastic and something great. He’s an unbelievable friend of mine and is a good guy. He made a decision to go home and he is happy with that and I am happy for him. Truly. I am genuinely happy for him. It gives him a chance to be around his family and friends. You got to respect the guy and be happy for him.”Other than losing Leonard and Danny Green this offseason, the Raptors have kept a fairly similar roster. Lowry said that Leonard’s departure doesn’t take anything away from what Toronto accomplished last season, and he’s still confident the Raptors can make another run at a championship.”We are champions. No matter what. [It will] never be taken away from us. Ever. Ever, ever. Ever, ever,” Lowry said. “We’re still going to be able to run it back. We’re the champions and we’re trying to defend our title. I’m confident with our team.” Kawhi Leonard texted former coach Nick Nurse to let him know free agency decision Related News Kawhi Leonard says he was ‘very close’ to choosing Lakers, Raptors over Clippers “But we’ll have that discussion when the time is right.”Kyle Lowry says he spoke to Kawhi Leonard before he made his decision to join the Clippers pic.twitter.com/cuclMQW2Ao— 2CooI2Blog (@2Cool2Bl0g) August 6, 2019Lowry also addressed playing alongside Leonard as the two led Toronto to its first NBA title in franchise history, defeating the Warriors in six games. Lowry explained that he’s happy for the three-time All-Star and he understood why Leonard chose the Clippers. Gregg Popovich holds first Team USA practice ahead of World Cup: ‘All I care about is who’s here’ Even though Kyle Lowry lost a Finals MVP teammate when Kawhi Leonard signed with the Clippers in free agency, the guard revealed he wants to stay in Toronto for the long haul. “I want to be there — I would love to do a long [term] extension, but we’ll see what happens,” Lowry, who is set to become a free agent after this upcoming season, told reporters Monday (via ESPN) after USA Basketball’s first training camp practice leading up to next month’s World Cup.