Energy

Constellation Energy Group

The owner of Nine Mile Point Nuclear Plant is again sounding a warning that without some financial help from New York state, it could have to close one of its reactors. This news on top of the announcement Fitzpatrick Nuclear Plant will be closing has Oswego county reeling.

New York Power Authority

New York officials have long sought a way to take excess energy that's produced in upstate power plants and ship it downstate where the consumer demand is far greater. Downstate consumes 60 percent of the state's energy according to the New York Power Authority (NYPA), but much of the power is produced upstate. Rather than build more transmission lines to link the two regions, NYPA has invested in a project that boosts the existing power infrastructure.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

While most central and northern New York crops are being planted right now, there’s one that’s being harvested. SUNY ESF researchers are harvesting willow, as part of a project that continues to find the best way to use the woody plant as an alternative energy source.

When most people hear the word willow, an image of a weeping willow tree comes to mind. But that’s not what SUNY ESF researchers are working on in the Willow Project, a program that’s developing a biomass energy source.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

During nearly two hours of testimony in Oswego City Hall Tuesday, community leaders and Nine Mile Point Nuclear Plant employees begged staff from New York's Public Service Commission to support the proposed "clean energy standard" under Gov. Andrew Cuomo's goal to generate half of the state's energy from renewable sources, like wind and solar, by 2030.

Lawrence Sinclair / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants the state to get half of its energy from renewable sources in the next 15 years. That has wind developers eyeing the farm land along the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario.

One energy company has revived an interest in constructing a wind farm in Jefferson County that would extend across the towns of Clayton, Orleans, Brownville and Lyme.

Residents are divided over the idea of wind in the Thousand Islands. Local environmental groups are weighing in too.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

The New York State Legislature has set aside $30 million in its new budget for communities devastated by closing power plants that result in at least a 20 percent reduction in the local property tax collections. It's intended to help offset the loss in places like Oswego County where the Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant is slated to be shutdown in January.

redplanet89 / Flickr

There’s going to be a new way to go solar in central New York. Solarize CNY Communities, the organization that’s helped install solar energy in several homes across central New York in recent years, is moving from rooftop arrays to making it a community affair.

Solarize CNY Communities project coordinator Katelyn Kriesel says all it takes for a resident to take advantage of solar power in this community model, is for them to be in the same utility zone as the arrays that convert sunshine into energy.

Bill Olsen / Nanos Clarkson University Research Collaboration

The Jefferson County town of Henderson paid $20,000 for researchers from the Nanos Clarkson Research Collaboration to determine what affects -- positive or negative -- a wind farm on Galloo Island might have on their lakeside town.

The residents who showed up at Henderson’s fire hall Monday night wanted answers. Most live in the lake-side town year round, a few made the drive from their winter homes. They were there to know what to expect if a developer constructs a 31-turbine wind farm 11-miles off shore on Galloo Island.

Researcher Stephen Bird summed up the findings.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Despite several attempts to secure financial assistance for the struggling FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant, no funding was included for it in New York state's next budget.

Assemblyman Will Barclay and state Sen. Patty Ritchie have both authored bills that would give Fitzpatrick's owner a $60 million tax credit, but neither were included in the budget, nor was a $100 million financial aid package to help pay for the cost of refueling the plant, which would need to be done this year.

Constellation Energy Group

Exelon Corporation says its Nine Mile Point Nuclear Station in Scriba is losing money and it is hoping for financial assistance from New York state in the near future.

Exelon's Executive Vice President for Governmental Affairs Joseph Dominguez said the nuclear plant is not making enough money to break even because of falling energy prices, a similar situation for the company's Ginna plant nearby Rochester and for Entergy's Fitzpatrick Nuclear Plant, which is slated for closure next year.

Entergy

New York Senate Republicans are offering a budget proposal that includes $100 million for Oswego County's James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Five years after the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan, protesters in Syracuse are calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to stop supporting nuclear and invest in renewable energy instead. The protest was organized by the Alliance for a Green Economy.

Constitution Pipeline pushes back its target date

Mar 10, 2016

The Constitution Pipeline Company has changed its planned completion date.

The second half 2017 is the new target for when the Constitution Pipeline will be in service. The previous in-service date was the fourth quarter of this year. 

In a statement on its website, the company says it needs more time to comply with the environmental conditions of federal regulators.

Entergy

If the owner of the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant refuses to keep the facility open, can the state force it to? That's the question after FitzPatrick owner Entergy has rejected several offers to help keep the financially stressed plant from closing in January. The company says it's too late, but some think the state may not need Entergy's approval.

Entergy

Update:

Just hours after the PSC announced its plan, Entergy said in a statement that the financial implications of the commission's efforts are too uncertain and that the proposal comes too late to save the FitzPatrick Nuclear Plant. The company said it will proceed with its plans to shutdown the FitzPatrick plant.

Earlier:

New York's Public Service Commission (PSC) is ordering its staff to develop a new rescue plan to help keep Oswego County's Fitzpatrick Nuclear Plant open.

Tony Fischer / Flickr

An official with Entergy said that its decision to close Oswego County's James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant last October is negatively affecting the way state lawmakers view its Indian Point nuclear facility.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

New York lawmakers are proposing policies that they hope can save struggling upstate nuclear power facilities, including Oswego County's FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant, from closing.

WBFO file photo

The New York Public Service Commission (PSC) approved $5 billion Thursday to help fund Gov. Andrew Cuomo's ambitious clean energy campaign, despite opposition from the state Senate. The "Clean Energy Fund" will finance research, innovation and market development to help the state meet Cuomo's goal of generating 50 percent of New York's power from renewable sources, and a 40 percent cut in greenhouse gas emissions, by 2030.

WBFO News File Photo

A plan to install up to 70 giant wind turbines in two neighboring communities along the Lake Ontario shoreline has strong opposition from many in those communities. They've gained allies from an unusual source: three retired Air Force colonels who claim the wind turbines would also jeopardize the future of the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

National Grid received a $10,000 donation from Dominion Transmission towards grants for low-income upstate residents to help pay for heat this winter.

Charles Rivers of Syracuse was one of those residents that filled out a grant application for this season. He is receiving $200 for his heating bills which is the maximum amount a customer can get. 

“That really helped out a lot, especially when you have children in the house, little ones in the house, it helps out so much,” Rivers said.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), which regulates nuclear power plants, is allowing the public more time to weigh in on how nuclear power plants are shut down as it considers changes to how the plants close, or decommission. It's a lengthy process that can take decades as the fuel decays and funds to pay for the shut down build up. 

Payne Horning / WRVO News

The state of New York's energy market changed dramatically in 2015. As natural gas and renewable sources took center stage, nuclear power sources like Oswego County's FitzPatrick Nuclear Plant were squeezed.

Credit Diliff / Wikimedia Commons

A study is underway that some New York officials are hoping will save Oswego County's FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant.

When Entergy notified the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in November that it planned to close the FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant in about a year, it triggered a ninety-day study. 

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

As the state plans to implement the governor's goal for double the amount of renewable energy on the market, a new study says losing upstate nuclear power plants would be a major set back for the initiative. The findings suggest that without nuclear power utilities would turn to fossil fuels over renewable sources.

Entergy/FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant

As state officials seek a way to keep the struggling Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant open, a new study finds that losing them could lead to higher electricity prices.

The Brattle Group, an economic consultant firm, published a study this week that finds upstate nuclear power plants in New York -- Fitzpatrick, Ginna and Nine Mile -- hold energy prices down. 

David Sommerstein / NCPR file photo

When Entergy first announced in November that they would close Fitzpatrick, some elected officials suggested that Exelon could potentially play a role in saving the plant. That prospect looks very dim now.

"There have been high level CEO to CEO discussions. However, no deal has been reached and Exelon has stated it’s not interested in purchasing FitzPatrick," said Tammy Holden, spokeswoman for the plant.

Matt Champlin / Flickr

As world leaders look for ways to combat climate change in Paris, New York officials are working on their own plan for a green future in the state.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

A new plan has been proposed to keep the Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant in Oswego County open. But it may not be enough.

Julia Botero / WRVO News

An energy developer out of Albany is considering building a 32-turbine wind farm on Galloo Island, six miles offshore, on Lake Ontario. But residents in the Jefferson County town of Henderson, on the shores of the lake, say all they would get out of the project is a ruined view.

If you’ve ever visited Henderson you know that the homes along the harbor are big and beautiful, with sweeping views of Lake Ontario. The town is small and quiet. 

When Entergy announced earlier this month that it will close the Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant, they cited potential economic losses. Yet some New York officials are suggesting that wasn't the whole story.

"Placing our families and students in the cross hairs in the Indian Point debate is unacceptable," said Sean Bruno, the Mexico School District superintendent. He said Fitzpatrick is being used as leverage.

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