Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Vermont files application to be Medicare prescription drug plan sponsor

first_imgBLUE CROSS AND BLUE SHIELD OF VERMONT FILES JOINT APPLICATION TO ADMINISTER MEDICARE PRESCRIPTION DRUG BENEFITBerlin, VT, Together with several of its sister Blue Plans, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont has filed an application to become a Medicare prescription drug plan sponsor. The Plan will co-sponsor the program with other Blue plans in the region designated by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services to serve Vermont. Region 2 includes Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, in addition to Vermont, so BCBSVT has teamed with Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Connecticut, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA) and Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI). The organizations expect to hear from CMS by June of this year if the application is approved, and will announce the details of the plan when CMS completes its review.Through their arrangement Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont and its sister plans will provide Part D prescription drug coverage, which will be available to Medicare beneficiaries in 2006 as provided by the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003. Unlike this years prescription drug discount cards, Part D will offer prescription drug insurance coverage. Additionally, government subsidies will be available to eligible Medicare beneficiaries who meet certain income requirements.As independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, the Plans have extensive collective experience with the Medicare population. Each of the four Blues plans has served the Medicare population since the inception of the Medicare program in 1966. Today, nearly 450,000 Medicare beneficiaries across Region 2 have selected the Blue Cross and Blue Shield brand by enrolling in either a Medicare supplemental or Medicare Advantage plan. The plans see the new prescription drug benefit as a logical extension of the health plans they currently offer to meet the needs of seniors and other Medicare beneficiaries.Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is committed to expanding access and options to all Vermont seniors, said Leigh Tofferi, BCBSVTs Director of Public Relations. We look forward to bringing this valuable coverage to Vermonters and, through our sister Blue Plans in Region 2, to other eligible Medicare beneficiaries in Region 2.Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is the state’s oldest and largest private health insurer, providing coverage for about 180,000 Vermonters. It employs over 350 Vermonters at its headquarters in Berlin and branch office in Williston, and offers group and individual health plans to Vermonters. More information about Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is available on the Internet at www.bcbsvt.com(link is external). Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont is an independent corporation operating under a license with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans.(End)last_img read more

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Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund awards $334,765 in grants for biofuels projects

first_imgThe Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund has awarded $334,765 in grant funds to develop local biofuels and foster the development of a viable biomass-to-biofuels industry in Vermont that uses local resources to replace petroleum with renewable alternatives.Ellen Kahler, VSJF Executive Director, stated that the “catastrophe of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill is yet another reminder of the consequences of our dependence on non-renewable fossil fuels for energy.? As the devastating ecological, cultural, and economic consequences of the spill unfold in the Gulf of Mexico, Vermont is continuing to explore opportunities for entrepreneurs, farmers, educators and others to develop renewable, sustainable energy alternatives. ““The projects funded through our Vermont Biofuels Initiative (VBI) are aimed at transitioning Vermont away from non-renewable energy toward local, renewable energy production.? Our oilseed-to-biodiesel grants will help Vermont’s dairy and other farms control fuel and feed costs by producing biodiesel and protein meal, and create new sources of farm revenue from the sale of locally produced livestock feed, vegetable oil, and bio-based energy,” said Biofuels Director Netaka White. Additionally, VBI grants are helping to stimulate research and development of algae as a biofuel feedstock. “Algae has the potential to substantially reduce fossil fuel consumption, while creating a host of new energy and technology business opportunities,” White said.The VSJF awarded $334,765 through two competitive grant rounds designed to accelerate the development of Vermont’s green economy through local production of liquid biofuels.? The VBI is funded by a Congressionally Directed Award from the Office of U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy through the U.S. Department of Energy, various private foundation sources, and the State of Vermont General Fund.For more information on the VSJF or the Vermont Biofuels Initiative visit www.vsjf.org(link is external).The Grantees include:$30,000???? Ekolott and Living Earth Farms in Newbury, VT — to gathercomparative agronomic and economic data on organic and conventional methods of oilseed crop production and processing and evaluate organic desiccants, deer repellant, planting and harvest times to reduce crop loss to birds and deer.$45,000???? Nava Bio-Energy in Brookfield, VT — to improve processingtechnology, refine the process chain, and maximize production in order to lower production costs and improve profitability of biodiesel production in Central Vermont.$30,000??? Otter Creek Biofuels / Woods Market Garden in Brandon, VT — togather comparative agronomic and economic data on organic and conventional methods of oilseed crop production and processing in order to expand oilseed crop production and oilseed pressing in West Central Vermont for eventual processing into biodiesel.$35,250???? Rainbow Valley Biodiesel in Brandon, VT — to increase grainstorage and oilseed pressing capacity in order to expand the scale of oilseed and biodiesel production in Addison and Rutland counties.$64,515???? Carbon Harvest in Burlington, VT to test the suitability of fluegas from landfills in order to determine the optimal conditions for commercial algae cultivation.$65,000???? General Systems Research in Burlington, VT — to identify andcultivate native? microalgae species suited for cold weather and use a rapid screening method of lipids quantification.$65,000???? Green Mountain Spark in Burlington, VT — to experiment withusing a photochemical process to separate oil from algae and turn the oil into biofuel in the same photobioreactor.The VSJF is a nonprofit organization formed by the State Legislature in 1995 to provide early stage grant funding and technical assistance to catalyze and accelerate the development of markets for sustainably produced goods and services.? The VSJF currently focuses on biofuels development, sustainable forest products industry development, and the expansion of local food systems in Vermont.Source: VSJF. 7.14.2010last_img read more

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Vermont to get $14 million from 2011 Trade Adjustment Assistance initial funding allocations

first_imgThe US Department of Labor has announced initial funding allocations for Trade Adjustment Assistance for states to assist workers who lose their jobs due to outsourcing and foreign trade. Vermont will get nearly $14 million to cover jobs lost to foreign competition.?This announcement includes two funding levels for states under the program: one under the current, expanded level of authorized funding, and one at a reduced level that will take effect on Jan. 1, 2011, if Congress fails to renew the expanded TAA program authorized by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. If the expanded program is not renewed, states stand to lose approximately $267 million in initial allocations, and thousands of workers could be excluded from the program. Additional reserve funding would be lost as well.”The Recovery Act has allowed us to serve more Americans through the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, giving workers access to essential services in a time of need,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “Returning TAA to pre-expansion funding levels and eligibility guidelines would leave a staggering number of workers in states across the country without access to this important program.”TAA provides workers with the opportunity to obtain the skills, resources and support needed to gain re-employment. Funds are used to provide career training, employment and case management services, and to pay for associated administrative costs. States will receive funds according to these allocations once the department receives its fiscal year 2011 congressional appropriation.The Recovery Act included a major expansion and reform of the TAA program, and authorized an increase in the maximum amount of TAA funds that may be used for training nationwide, from $220 million to $575 million. If Congress does not renew the expanded program before Jan. 1, 2011, funding will revert to pre-Recovery Act levels, and service industry workers will no longer be covered by the program.Funds announced today are the initial allocations for fiscal year 2011 for both the expanded and reduced levels. The remaining funds are being held in reserve by the Labor Department for distribution as needed throughout the year.? Kansas$1,397,111$743,098 Missouri$13,408,136$5,651,273 Vermont$873,842$528,898 StateTotal FY 2011 TAA Initial Allocation $575 Million Training Level*Total FY 2011 TAA Initial Allocation $220 Million Training Level* Colorado$3,690,552$1,565,884 New Mexico$3,129,322$1,420,353 Nebraska$1,159,748$716,459 Missouri7,4582,77137.15% Delaware$616,408$481,944 Georgia$10,127,786$4,466,586 Montana61627644.81% District of Columbia$0$0 Indiana15,0162,96919.77% Idaho$6,139,516$2,645,829 Illinois$16,828,636$6,776,605 Total$446,962,500$180,200,000 Arizona8,3724,83257.72% New Hampshire$1,462,784$770,937 New Mexico2,4001,55864.92% Louisiana$1,977,091$959,206 Virginia9,3923,99742.56% Maryland$976,878$603,513 Iowa4,1191,32332.12% Montana$3,461,566$1,454,567 U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at?http://www.dol.gov(link is external). ?The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. ?Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. ?The Labor Department is committed to providing America’s employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations.? For more information, please visit?www.dol.gov/compliance(link is external). Wisconsin$18,656,325$7,755,725 Nebraska1,15472462.74% South Dakota92535037.84% Michigan$57,129,772$21,353,658 Nevada$502,420$0 Connecticut3,0661,76257.47% DC000 Wyoming4600.00% New York$11,329,275$4,189,378 North Carolina$39,199,147$16,295,004 Georgia4,6821,51132.27% Ohio$26,862,367$9,191,913 Arkansas3,50771720.44% Delaware1,27680.63% Pennsylvania$22,116,022$9,410,643 North Carolina17,3738,73150.26% North Dakota905905100.00% South Carolina$12,569,797$5,602,451 Hawaii4343100.00% Texas$15,077,456$6,208,649 New York10,4155,40151.86% Indiana$23,734,414$9,085,254 Wyoming$0$0 Texas16,65510,00960.10% Virginia$9,750,747$3,715,915 Louisiana1,661663.97% Florida5,4472,39844.02% Alaska$541,773$0 U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at?http://www.dol.gov(link is external). ?The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audiotape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. ?Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. ?The Labor Department is committed to providing America’s employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. ?For more information, please visit?http://www.dol.gov/compliance(link is external). Florida$3,375,973$1,269,050 Meanwhile, Solis?today issued the following statement on the extension of the expanded Trade Adjustment Assistance program:”Last year, through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Congress made the wise decision to expand Trade Adjustment Assistance eligibility to service sector workers adversely impacted by trade. ?Prior to that, the program focused solely on workers in the manufacturing sector. ?The expanded program offers a crucial lifeline to many working families whose breadwinners lost their jobs through no fault of their own. ?“In fact, between?May 2009?and the end of September, more than 155,000 Americans who may have otherwise been ineligible for assistance were certified to receive the income support and training that they desperately needed. ?TAA benefits can help participants keep food on the table for their families, and training ensures they are prepared for new employment opportunities. ?“Unless Congress takes action, however, the expanded TAA program will expire at the end of 2010. ?That could leave a great many trade-impacted workers across the country without needed support and services. ?And it would undermine the progress we are making as a nation toward economic recovery.”It also merits underscoring that those who receive TAA have lost jobs through no fault of their own and many are actively pursuing training for new careers. In other words, these are experienced workers, firmly committed to putting in the effort to get back on their feet. As a group, they have strong work records, and they are a tremendous asset to our economy. Continuing to help them gain the skills needed to enter good jobs contributes to the overall health of our economy, and it just makes sense.”As this issue comes to a head over the coming weeks, federal legislators will have an important choice to make. ?I urge them to keep in mind that America’s families still need our help, to make the responsible decision and to extend the expanded TAA program. ?It is also my hope that Congress acts on our no-cost technical fixes to the TAA Community College and Career Training Program that will help this new program succeed and benefit a broader population of unemployed workers.” Utah$3,765,926$1,529,840center_img Nevada873439.08% Oklahoma$3,218,115$1,644,148 Alaska33100.00% West Virginia$4,537,397$1,975,437 Mississippi$3,455,817$1,438,379 South Dakota$1,955,398$802,322 Illinois18,5816,06732.65% Oregon11,3615,82851.30% Oregon$15,804,810$5,794,776 New Jersey$3,895,246$1,949,997 Colorado3,0692,33075.92% Tennessee12,1283,15826.04% Idaho1,9711,48975.55% Iowa$7,258,088$2,439,507 Minnesota$8,244,122$3,133,521 Maryland97159961.69% Puerto Rico$488,909$0 North Dakota$653,372$0 Kentucky8,0873,25240.21% *Includes training, administrative and case management funds Ohio31,4657,74324.61% Kentucky$11,628,652$4,678,271 Vermont89328431.80% Michigan45,33013,29629.33% Kansas1,55495061.13% Mississippi2,49291336.64% Massachusetts$8,977,944$4,130,816 Utah3,2682,18666.89% Rhode Island$3,208,666$1,463,611 California23,67816,22368.52% New Hampshire1,02180178.45% New Jersey5,4654,81788.14% Washington$11,989,030$4,682,929 Minnesota7,2463,45247.64% Connecticut$4,014,079$1,596,745 Hawaii$0$0 Massachusetts8,2285,37565.33% Oklahoma1,6681,36882.01% Alabama$8,754,884$3,539,184 Tennessee$8,317,583$4,003,082 StateTotal Workers Certified Since Recovery Act ExpansionWorkers Covered Under New Provisions Since Recovery Act ExpansionPercent of Workers Under New Provisions Since Recovery Act Expansion Maine2,44677131.52% Arkansas$9,741,945$3,749,887 California$13,135,465$5,724,425 Rhode Island1,20152843.96% Maine$4,789,892$1,782,059 South Carolina7,1273,36247.17% Washington6,3002,01431.97% Pennsylvania22,1527,28832.90% Puerto Rico77900.00% West Virginia3,6022,93281.40% Wisconsin11,9263,82732.09% Arizona$3,032,300$1,278,272 Alabama8,8003,90644.39% Total367,427155,14742.23% Source:?U.S. Department of Labor?WASHINGTON, Nov. 17, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ —last_img read more

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$11 million slated for Vermont home heating assistance

first_imgThe Senate today approved an additional $10.8 million for home heating assistance for about 27,000 Vermont households, Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced.The Senate this afternoon voted 79 to 16 for the funding, which is included in a bill to keep the federal government running until March 4. Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) said a final House vote could occur this evening.Vermont and other states had faced the prospect of a 40 percent cut in the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which helps senior citizens on fixed incomes, families with children and the disabled.Sanders said, ‘At a time when heating oil prices are skyrocketing and temperatures are falling, this critically-important program will help insure that no one in Vermont goes cold this winter. During these very difficult times, seniors on fixed incomes and families with children shouldn’t have to make the unacceptable choice between heating their homes and putting food on the table.’Leahy, a senior member of the Appropriations Committee which crafted the bill, said, ‘Topping up this essential program for the harsh winter weather has been a top priority in the final days of this session, and I am pleased that we are getting that job done.? Home heat in wintertime is not a choice but a necessity, and this will mean relief for thousands of struggling Vermont households.’Welch said, ‘This program is a critical safety net for countless low-income families and seniors in Vermont. There is simply no excuse for failing to help Vermonters get through a cold, difficult winter during a time of such economic uncertainty.’Federal funding for the heating assistance program was nearly doubled in the last two years under a provision sponsored by Sanders. Leahy cosponsored that 2008 legislation and Welch sponsored companion legislation that year in the House.So far this year, Vermont has received a total of $14.8 million for LIHEAP, compared to the $25.6 million in regular funding it received last year.More than 27,000 Vermont households will receive benefits, up from 20,350 last year. Because the demand has increased but the amount available so far has decreased and the number of eligible households has expanded, the average benefit is being reduced from about $1,100 last year to about $660 this heating season.After Congress doubled funding for home heating assistance in 2009, a record 8.3 million households nationwide received aid.? This winter, as a result of the lingering recession, many more families are expected to need help keeping the heat turned on.Source:?WASHINGTON, Dec. 21, 2010 ‘ Vt congressional delegation.last_img read more

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Australian Financial Review: Potential ‘Beginning of End’ for Victoria Coal Industry

first_imgAustralian Financial Review: Potential ‘Beginning of End’ for Victoria Coal Industry FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Ben Potter for the Australian Financial Review:French energy giant Engie is considering closing Hazelwood power station in a move that could signal the beginning of the end for the cheap brown coal power that helped build Victoria’s post-World War 2 industry. ?Luke van der Meulen, president of the Morwell branch of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union, said closure would be devastating and called on the Victorian and federal governments to step in with a plan to diversify the La Trobe Valley economy away from coal.“If it’s left up to the market we are buggered,” Mr van der Meulen said.It confirms the shift away from coal in the NEM, but Mr Mountain said about 3500 megawatts of coal fired power had already been removed from the NEM in the past three years with no impact on emissions. Neither would Hazelwood’s closure have much impact on Victoria’s NEM prices, given the 7000 megawatts of surplus NEM capacity, he said. Hazelwood was sold to Britain’s International Power for $2.35 billion in 1996 and is now owned 72 per cent by Engie and 28 per cent by Japan’s Mitsui.Engie extended Hazelwood a $652 million lifeline in 2012 but the plant may be worth next to nothing now. It makes about $100 million a year before interest and tax, but is 47 years old and site remediation and other closure costs could easily wipe out any value, said Tim King of the anti-coal Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis.Full article: Hazelwood closure could mark beginning of end for Victoria’s brown coallast_img read more

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Statoil Sees Growth Potential in Offshore Wind

first_imgStatoil Sees Growth Potential in Offshore Wind FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:LONDON/OSLO—Statoil is working with its partner SSE to develop the Dogger Bank offshore wind project so it can take part in Britain’s renewable energy subsidy auction in 2019, the company said on Friday.The planned 4.8-gigawatt (GW) Dogger Bank project, which has approval from the British authorities, is set to become the world’s largest offshore wind park and could deliver more than five percent of Britain’s electricity needs, Statoil Executive Vice President Irene Rummelhoff said in London.Statoil has a 50 percent stake in the partnership developing 3.6 GW of the approved capacity at Dogger Bank. “The strategic importance of that project to the UK and Statoil can not be overestimated,” Rummelhoff said.The Norwegian oil and gas firm says it plans to spend up to 15-20 percent of capital spending on “new energy solutions” by 2030, as part of its effort to become a “broad energy” company.Last year, Statoil built the world’s first floating offshore wind park off Scotland, using in-house technology. Its plans also include developing a 1.5-GW offshore wind park in the United States outside New York. “We see growing potential for floating (wind projects),” Rummelhoff said. “We expect about 13 GW floating offshore wind to be installed by 2030. On a global basis, we hope to take a fair share of that.”More: Statoil Eyes Britain’s 2019 Renewable Subsidy Auction For Dogger Banklast_img read more

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New Mexico regulators approve 2,200MW wind project

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):New Mexico utility regulators on Oct. 3 agreed to issue a permit for construction for Pattern Energy Group Inc.’s ambitious plan to install 2,200 MW of wind energy capacity across more than 300,000 acres in the east-central part of the state.The state Public Regulation Commission approved the Corona Wind Projects consisting of up to 950 wind turbines and about 80 miles of 345-kV transmission lines that Pattern Energy subsidiaries propose to install across three counties.The projects would tie-in to SunZia Transmission’s proposed 520-mile SunZia Southwest Transmission Project at the proposed SunZia East substation near Corona, N.M. The PRC denied approval of SunZia on Sept. 5, deciding it did not have enough information to approve the two 500-kV lines across 320 miles in New Mexico, although the Arizona Corporation Commission in early 2016 approved a permit for the 200-mile stretch that would cross the southeastern portion of that state. Pattern Energy Group LP, known as Pattern Development and a privately held affiliate of publicly traded Pattern Energy Group Inc., is the transmission project’s anchor tenant.However, the New Mexico regulators rejected the transmission line without prejudice, meaning SunZia can submit a new application, which the developer has said it plans to do. SouthWestern Power Group II LLC is the major partner in the project. MMR Group Inc. is SouthWestern’s parent company.The SunZia project would be the main path for transmission of energy from the Corona projects, with the aim of selling the power to Arizona, California and possibly Utah. PRC Hearing Examiner Anthony Medeiros on Sept. 26 told the commissioners in a recommended decision that the status of the SunZia project has no bearing legally on whether the commission should approve the wind projects because the developers do not have to show they have a means to deliver their power.Pattern Energy is developing the wind projects at its own risk, Medeiros said, and the permit to construct can be issued based entirely on whether environmental and land use requirements have been met and whether the plans for the project are of sufficient detail to meet state statutory requirements. Unlike the commission’s conclusion on the transmission project plans, Medeiros said the wind project plans meet the state requirements, and he recommended approval, subject to 26 conditions including compliance with air and water pollution controls and bird protection measures.More ($): New Mexico approves plans for 2,200 MW of wind capacity New Mexico regulators approve 2,200MW wind projectlast_img read more

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Mining firm BHP says its Australian, Chilean power tenders could be a ‘game changer’

first_imgMining firm BHP says its Australian, Chilean power tenders could be a ‘game changer’ FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Renew Economy:Mining giant BHP has put its electricity contracts for its operations on Australia’s main grid and in Chile out to tender, and expects that offers including renewable energy could present the cheapest and most efficient options.BHP consumes about 6 terawatt-hours in Chile, around seven per cent of that country’s annual electricity demand, and it has a 300MW requirement for the operations on Australia’s National Electricity Market, including for the power-hungry operations at Olympic Dam in South Australia.“We are in market in both Chile and Australia for significant amounts of energy,” the head of low emissions technology at BHP, Kirsten Rose, said at the Energy and Mines conference in Perth this week.“The ability to use BHP’s purchasing power in this way is significant…these are technology agnostic tenders by the way, but we encourage innovation and to bring value to the table. We are really interested to see what happens, but we fully expect there will be a significant renewable component to that…and that for us could be game changing.”Recent tenders held by corporates and utilities have underlined the cheaper cost of wind and solar, including the cost of “firming” to ensure consistent supply.Rose says the BHP tender would evaluate cost, reliability and emissions, but she notes that for the first time BHP is putting a strong emphasis on the carbon content of its electricity supply contracts. “We are certainly turning the evaluation on its head from what we have done in the past.”More: BHP energy tender could deliver “game changing” shift to renewableslast_img read more

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Appalachian shale producer EQT Corp. may take $1.8 billion fourth quarter charge

first_imgAppalachian shale producer EQT Corp. may take $1.8 billion fourth quarter charge FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Natural Gas Intelligence:EQT Corp. said in a regulatory filing on Monday it may incur a steep one-time impairment of up to $1.8 billion for the fourth quarter due to a new development plan and low natural gas prices.Under a new management team that took over last July, the nation’s largest natural gas producer is aiming to aggressively cut debt and realign operations to boost performance and value. Management has outlined plans to cut debt by $1.5 billion by mid-2020, which it expects to achieve with a mix of initiatives, including asset sales.The monetization, along with a decrease in the value of its reserves and the writedown of unproven properties no longer in the development plan, is likely to result in a 4Q2019 impairment of $1.4-1.8 billion, the company said in a Form 8-K filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The figure could change as year-end results are finalized.Fourth quarter production is expected to average 370-375 Bcfe, or toward the high-end of previously announced guidance, according to preliminary estimates. The company produced 394 Bcfe in the year-ago period and 381 Bcfe in 3Q2019. It is guiding for 1.45-1.50 Tcfe of production this year, roughly flat to 2019 levels.Averaged realized prices are also expected to average $2.51-2.56/Mcfe in 4Q2019, or below the 4Q2018 average of $3.13/Mcfe.EQT also said Monday it would offer two new series of fixed rate senior notes. Moody’s Investors Service downgraded the company following Monday’s filing.[Jamison Cocklin]More: Appalachian heavyweight EQT warns of $1B-plus impairment for fourth quarterlast_img read more

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New Australian study, same old conclusion: Renewables are cheaper than gas, coal

first_imgNew Australian study, same old conclusion: Renewables are cheaper than gas, coal FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Renew Economy:An updated study on current and future generation costs by the CSIRO and the Australian Energy Market Operator confirms that wind, solar and storage technologies are by far the cheapest form of low carbon options for Australia, and are likely to dominate the global energy mix in coming decades.The first report, GenCost 2018, identified that wind and solar were by far the cheapest forms of new generation technologies, clearly cheaper than coal, and even when combined with storage, remained easily the cheapest form low carbon electricity options.A draft of the updated study, GenCost 2019-20, has been quietly posted on the AEMO website and confirms that wind and solar and storage remain the cheapest technologies, now and into the future, and much cheaper than the technologies promoted by the Australian government – gas, carbon capture, and nuclear.Its capital cost estimates – which assume continue cost reductions for solar, wind and dramatic falls for batteries, remain little changed from the 2018 version, although wind cost reductions are lower than expected last year.And despite ferocious criticism by the nuclear lobby, its estimates for nuclear remain unchanged, largely because it says there have been no technology advances since the last report. It does recognise the potential for small nuclear reactors in certain scenarios, but these are heavily qualified: they are at least a decade away, and would still deliver a levelised cost of energy at least twice that of wind and solar and storage.“The global generation mix is expected to be dominated by wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) by 2050 in all three scenarios explored in this report: Central, High CRE and Diverse technology,” the report says.[Giles Parkinson]More: New CSIRO, AEMO study confirms wind, solar and storage beat coal, gas and nuclearlast_img read more

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