Houston company pulls out of coal-powered plant project

A key backer for one of three coal-fired power projects in Nevada announced Friday that it was ending its participation in the project.

Dynegy Inc. of Houston said that it and LS Power Associates of East Brunswick, N.J., are dissolving their development joint venture for the Nevada generation plant and other new projects.

The joint venture was developing the 1,600-megawatt White Pine Energy Station near Ely and the Southwest Intertie Project, a transmission line that could provide the first direct connection between electric utilities in Southern Nevada and Northern Nevada.

LS Power will acquire full ownership and development rights for the White Pine project, the transmission line and new developments in four other states as a result of the dissolution.

The New Jersey company will continue work on the transmission and power plant projects in Nevada, Mark Milburn, LS Power’s project development director, said.

“We’re 100 percent committed to all of our Nevada projects,” Milburn said. “Nothing changes on the ground.”

“It just kind of allows us to do what we do best,” which is develop new power plants and transmission lines, he said. Dynegy is more focused on operating plants it owns, rather than on developing new ones, he said.

LS Power, a private company, owns 40 percent of the outstanding shares of publicly held Dynegy.

The two companies formed the joint venture two years ago to build coal and gas-fired power plants. Since then, environmentalists have urged regulators to stop the coal-fired power projects, saying the plants would throw off large quantities of carbon dioxide that leads to global warming.

In explaining its exit, Dynegy also referred to the need to obtain financing for the projects. The credit crunch has made it difficult to finance major projects, energy industry insiders say.

“Today, the development of new generation is increasingly marked by barriers to entry including external credit and regulatory factors that make development much more uncertain,” Dynegy Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Bruce Williamson said in a statement.

With the joint venture’s dissolution, LS Power alone will pursue new projects in Nevada and other states, Dynegy said. LS Power also will get $19 million in cash during the first quarter.

Bruce Nilles, national coal campaign director at the Sierra Club on Friday applauded the announcement in a statement.

“Dynegy has been the largest developer of new coal-fired power plants in the country, and it seems like the company has recognized our efforts to move to a clean energy future,” he said.

But Milburn said the loss of Dynegy’s backing will not hamper the Nevada projects; he cited the company’s track record for building successful power plants.

LS Power has $4 billion in private equity and expects to obtain commitments from utilities wanting to buy the power before seeking financing for the project, Milburn said.

Milburn expects to obtain a final air permit for the project early this year from the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection and approval from the Public Utilities Commission by April.

Appeals would delay the project. Environmentalists have aggressively opposed the LS Power plant, the nearby Ely Energy Center project of NV Energy Inc. and Sithe Global Power’s coal-fired project outside of Mesquite.

However, LS Power has drawn little opposition to build the first segment of the Southwest Intertie Project, a 500-kilovolt transmission line that would run 234 miles from Las Vegas to a site near Ely.

Although the power line could carry electricity from the White Pine power plant, the transmission line also could carry geothermal, wind and other kinds of renewable energy.

NV Energy also wants to build a line along the similar route, but the utility company has yet to obtain approval from the BLM for use of federal land. BLM late last year granted approval to LS Power to use federal land to build the Southwest Intertie Project.

LS Power proposes to build a second phase that would run from Nevada to a substation in Idaho.

LS Power is evaluating offers for transmission before deciding whether it’s feasible to build the transmission line, Milburn said. Construction on the transmission line could start by year’s end.

Contact reporter John G. Edwards at jedwards@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0420.

Holiday Parade Lights Up Downtown Summerlin
Holiday parade lights up Downtown Summerlin every Friday and Saturday night through Dec. 22.
Nevada's solar industry on the rebound
In 2015, the Nevada Public Utilities Commission voted in favor of a new tariff structure that reduced net energy metering buyback rates and increased fix fees for residential solar customers.
Apartment complexes selling fast in Las Vegas
Las Vegas’ apartment vacancy rate is among the smallest in the country, and rents are climbing faster than the national average. (LVRJ)
Aristocrat Opens $45M Campus In Summerlin
Aristocrat Technologies Chairman Ian Blackburne discusses the company's growth. (LVRJ)
Sunrise Hospital celebrates 60 years
Sunrise Hospital opened its doors to patients on Dec. 15, 1958. Employees of more than 35 years celebrated at a luncheon Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018. Jessie Bekker/ Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Maya Cinemas to open soon in North Las Vegas
Moctesuma Esparza, CEO of Maya Cinemas, talks about the newest location in North Las Vegas, set to open Jan. 10. The aim of the theatre chain is to serve latino-centric, underserved communities.
Holiday shopping and returns make this the busiest time of year for UPS
The UPS Las Vegas South facility is the company's busiest pre-load operation in the country, and it's even busier this time of year. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Primm’s outlet mall has fallen on hard times
The mall, attached to Primm Valley Resort, opened in 1998. Back then, it was a “textbook, perfect outlet-center location." But now, Primm’s outlet mall has fallen on hard times. Las Vegas Boulevard has endless shopping spots. And there are other outlet malls that don’t require a hefty drive to the state line. Its mortgage-holder foreclosed on the mall in late September.
Miltary auction at Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers
Humvees, ammo cans, construction equipment, field gear and more is on the auction block Friday and Saturday at Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers. About 10,000 items in all are for sale in what GovPlanet bills as the largest auction of its kind.
Las Vegas residents discuss avoiding holiday scams
Las Vegas residents discuss their donation habits and how they avoid giving money to scam charities during the holiday season. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Tesla’s Nevada Gigafactory ahead of economic impact expectations
The Tesla Gigafactory’s economic impact on Nevada has exceeded projections, bringing in more than 7,000 jobs. In 2014, Nevada agreed to give the automotive and energy company $1.3 billion in tax abatements. In return, Tesla promised to meet certain requirements in areas like employment and capital investment. As of June, Tesla has brought in a total of $6.05 billion in capital investment, surpassing the $4.95 billion projection. The original contract gave the company until 2024 to make $3.5 billion in capital investments in Nevada. Derek Armstrong, deputy director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.
Land sales near the Las Vegas Raiders stadium
Land around the Las Vegas stadium site has been selling for high prices. A few months before the stadium’s groundbreaking, Global Trust Group acquired a 2.5-acre parcel just north of the stadium site. The property sold for $7.25 million, or $2.9 million an acre. Osprey Real Estate Capital and Huntington Hotel Group acquired a 2-acre industrial site just west of the stadium site in late November. The property sold for $6.5 million, or $3.15 million per acre. That's roughly 12 times the average price of land in the valley this year as tracked by Colliers International.
T-Mobile Tech Experience Truck parks in Toshiba Plaza at T-Mobile Arena
The Tech Experience Truck is a state-of-the-art showroom on wheels, with demonstrations that put connected drones, smart cities, augmented/virtual reality and smart tracking. The exhibit shows new wireless technology – including 5G and the Internet of Things (IoT). (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Steve Siegel, CEO of the Siegel Group, speaks about helping families and other needy residents
Steve Siegel, CEO of the Siegel Group, speaks about helping families and other needy residents to keep them from teetering off into homelessness. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vrgas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Crowds camp out for Chick-fil-A opening
Dozens of customers camped out 24 hours ahead of the 6 a.m. Thursday opening of the new Chick-fil-A on Rainbow Blvd.
Cheapest listings for sale in Las Vegas
Listed for $39,990, 585 S. Royal Crest Circle, Unit #9 is one of the cheapest homes currently listed for sale in Las Vegas. (Caroline Brehman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MGM's sports betting deals
MGM Resorts International signed a sports betting sponsorship agreement with the NBA in July It was the first professional sports league to have official ties with a legal sports betting house. The deal came just two months after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a law prohibiting sports betting in most states. In October, MGM became the first gaming company to sign a sports betting partnership with the NHL. In November, MGM became the first gaming company to sign a sports betting partnership with the MLB. Financial terms of Tuesday’s deal and earlier partnerships have not been announced.
Terry Miller discusses Convention Center
Project Manager Terry Miller explains the phases of Convention Center construction.
Zappos treats their team members on Cyber Monday
Zappos rolls out a variety of food, drinks and special activities for all team members at their downtown Las Vegas headquarters for Cyber Monday. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Team Hybrid at the 2019-Model Motor Trend International Auto Show
Among the companies showing off the 2019 model cars, Team Hybrid shows off its modified cars. Las Vegas resident David David talks about the team, which is in its ninth year exhibiting at the show, and his show car.
Black Friday Shoppers at downtown Summerlin and at the Arsenal
Black Friday shoppers at downtown Summerlin and at the Arsenal. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfYe
Black Friday shopping in Las Vegas
Black Friday sale shopers express their shopping experience. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Las Vegas Livestock recycling Strip food waste
Las Vegas Livestock collects and recycles food from many Las Vegas Strip companies. (Nicole Raz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Black Friday at Fry's
Shoppers line up for deals early on Black Friday at Fry's Electronics on Las Vegas Boulevard South. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Black Friday shoppers at Best Buy at 5 am
Black Friday shoppers at Best Buy at 5 am on Nov. 23. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Black Friday - 1am Closing Time
Quiet night.
Black Friday - 12:30am - Best Buy Arroyo Crossing
Sam's Town Holiday Lighting Ceremony
On Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2018, Mystic Falls Park opened with its annual tree lighting ceremony, hosted by Boyd Gaming Executive Chairman Bill Boyd. The attraction features a Winter Wonderland theme and holiday-inspired laser light show, available daily Nov. 23 to Jan. 1. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
What Is A Smart City?
George Karayannis, vice president of CityNow, Panasonic’s smart-city arm, explains. (Nicole Raz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Walmart uses virtual reality to train employees
Walmart Academy Facilitator demonstrates the VR training program being used by Walmart stores across the country.
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like