The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is the largest municipal utility in the United States, serving over four million residents. It was founded in 1902 to supply water to residents and businesses in Los Angeles and surrounding communities. In 1917, it started to deliver electricity. It has been involved in a number of controversies and media portrayals over the years, including the 1928 St. Francis Dam failure and the books Water and Power and Cadillac Desert.LADWP can currently deliver 7200 megawatts of electricity and, in each year, 200 billion US gallons of water. Wikipedia.
News Article | November 21, 2016
GUELPH, Ontario, Nov 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Canadian Solar Inc. ("Canadian Solar" or the "Company") (NASDAQ: CSIQ), one of the world's largest solar power companies, today announced its financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2016. Net revenue in the third quarter of 2016 was $657.3 million, down 18.4% from $805.9 million in the second quarter of 2016 and 22.7% from $849.8 million in the third quarter of 2015. Module shipments recognized in revenue totaled 1,161 MW, compared to 1,290 MW recognized in revenue in the second quarter of 2016 and 1,150 MW recognized in revenue in the third quarter of 2015. Solar module shipments recognized in revenue in the third quarter of 2016 included 16.3 MW used in the total solutions business, compared to 18.7 MW in the second quarter of 2016 and 110.5 MW in the third quarter of 2015. The following table is a summary of net revenues by geographic region based on the location of customers' headquarters (in millions of US$, except percentages). Gross profit in the third quarter of 2016 was $117.3 million, compared to $138.5 million in the second quarter of 2016 and $126.8 million in the third quarter of 2015. Gross margin in the third quarter of 2016 was 17.8%, compared to 17.2% in the second quarter of 2016 and 14.9% in the third quarter of 2015. The sequential increase in gross margin was primarily due to lower module costs resulting from decreased purchase price of wafer and cell as well as improved manufacturing efficiency of the Company. Total operating expenses were $90.3 million in the third quarter of 2016, down 8.7% from $98.9 million in the second quarter of 2016 and 5.9% from $95.9 million in the third quarter of 2015. Selling expenses were $34.0 million in the third quarter of 2016, up 0.3% from $33.9 million in the second quarter of 2016 and down 8.8% from $37.2 million in the third quarter of 2015. The slight sequential increase in selling expenses was primarily due to higher labor costs, partially offset by lower shipping and handling expenses and external sales commission. The year-over-year decrease in selling expenses was primarily due to lower external sales commission, partially offset by higher labor costs. General and administrative expenses were $51.7 million in the third quarter of 2016, down 13.8% from $60.0 million in the second quarter of 2016 and 5.4% from $54.6 million in the third quarter of 2015. Excluding the non-recurring charges recorded in the second quarter, which include a $10.8 million charge for the terminated YieldCo launch and a $7.6 million estimated tornado damage to the Company's Funing cell factory, and a $20.8 million expense recorded in the third quarter of 2015 for the settlement of LDK arbitration case, general and administrative expenses actually increased sequentially and year-over-year primarily due to an approximately $6.6 million impairment charge for certain solar power systems as well as higher labor costs. Research and development expenses were $4.6 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $5.1 million in the second quarter of 2016 and $4.1 million in the third quarter of 2015. Income from operations was $27.0 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $39.6 million in the second quarter of 2016, and $30.9 million in the third quarter of 2015. Operating margin was 4.1% in the third quarter of 2016, compared to 4.9% in the second quarter of 2016 and 3.6% in the third quarter of 2015. Non-cash depreciation and amortization charges were approximately $25.4 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $25.5 million in the second quarter of 2016, and $24.8 million in the third quarter of 2015. Non-cash equity compensation expense was $1.8 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $1.9 million in the second quarter of 2016, and $1.4 million in the third quarter of 2015. Interest expense was $18.8 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $11.9 million in the second quarter of 2016, and $13.0 million in the third quarter of 2015. The increase in interest expense was mainly due to lower capitalized interest, a higher balance of outstanding debt and higher financing costs for the Company's projects in the U.S. Interest income was $2.1 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $2.4 million in the second quarter of 2016 and $4.2 million in the third quarter of 2015. The Company recorded a gain on change in fair value of derivatives of $2.0 million in the third quarter of 2016, compared to a loss on change in fair value of derivatives of $1.6 million in the second quarter of 2016 and a loss on change in fair value of derivatives of $12.3 million in the third quarter of 2015. The gain on change in fair value of derivatives in the third quarter of 2016 came primarily from the change in fair value of warrants of $1.7 million. The Company recorded a foreign exchange gain in the third quarter of 2016 of $4.4 million compared to a gain of $24.9 million in the second quarter of 2016 and a gain of $17.1 million in the third quarter of 2015. Income tax expense was $16 thousand in the third quarter of 2016, compared to $16.3 million in the second quarter of 2016 and income tax benefit of $3.9 million in the third quarter of 2015. Net income attributable to Canadian Solar was $15.6 million, or $0.27 per diluted share, in the third quarter of 2016, compared to net income of $40.4 million, or $0.68 per diluted share, in the second quarter of 2016, and net income of $30.4 million, or $0.53 per diluted share, in the third quarter of 2015. The Company had $986.0 million of cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash as of September 30, 2016, compared to $1.0 billion as of June 30, 2016. As of the end of the third quarter of 2016, $24.7 million of cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash, among other assets, was reclassified under 'Assets held-for-sale' as further discussed below. Accounts receivable, net of allowance for doubtful accounts, at the end of the third quarter of 2016 were $350.1 million, compared to $356.7 million at the end of the second quarter of 2016. As of the end of the third quarter of 2016, $18.7 million of accounts receivable was reclassified to 'Assets held-for-sale' as further discussed below. Accounts receivable turnover was 68 days in the third quarter of 2016, compared to 60 days in the second quarter of 2016. Inventories at the end of the third quarter of 2016 were $313.9 million, compared to $309.7 million at the end of the second quarter of 2016. Inventory turnover was 56 days in the third quarter of 2016, compared to 51 days in the second quarter of 2016. As of September 30, 2016, the Company had $436.0 million of solar power system assets carried as non-current assets, compared to $1.8 billion at the end of the second quarter of 2016. These assets included operating solar plants as well as plants under construction, which the Company held for the purpose of generating electricity income. In the third quarter, the Company has decided to sell certain solar power plants and as a result it has reclassified $1.6 billion of assets under these projects legal entities, including $1.5 billion of solar power systems, $24.7 million of cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash and $18.7 million of accounts receivable, to 'Project assets - current' and 'Assets held-for-sale'. Total project assets and assets held-for-sale at the end of the third quarter of 2016 were $1.2 billion and $529.2 million respectively. Correspondingly, the Company also reclassified $356.3 million of liabilities, primarily including $143.5 million of short-term borrowings and $151.7 million of long-term borrowings associated with these assets held-for-sale, to 'Liabilities held-for-sale'. Accounts and notes payable at the end of the third quarter of 2016 were $801.9 million, compared to $937.3 million at the end of the second quarter of 2016. Short-term borrowings at the end of the third quarter of 2016 were $1.51 billion, compared to $1.37 billion at the end of the second quarter of 2016. Long-term debt at the end of the third quarter of 2016 was $615.8 million, compared to $828.5 million at the end of the second quarter of 2016. Senior convertible notes totaled $125.4 million at the end of the third quarter of 2016, compared to $128.0 million at the end of the second quarter of 2016. Short-term borrowings and long-term debt directly related to utility-scale solar power projects totaled $1.18 billion at the end of the third quarter of 2016, compared to $834.9 million at the end of the second quarter of 2016. Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Solar, remarked: "Our solar module shipments and revenue came in at the low end of our guidance, due to the dislocation of the global solar market during the quarter and the quarter-end logistic disruption caused by the bankruptcy of Hanjin Shipping in September. Our team has effectively managed the supply chain and our own production output to offset the macro impact of solar module ASP declines in the broader market. We achieved a gross margin of 17.8%, which was well above our guidance and reflects our strong inventory management and continued improvement in manufacturing efficiencies. During the quarter, we continued to develop our downstream energy business. At the end of the quarter, our late-stage solar project pipeline stood at 2.0 GWp and our portfolio of solar plants in operation totaled 948 MWp. Our footprint now covers the world's most attractive markets: the U.S., Canada, Japan, Brazil, China, Mexico, the United Kingdom and Africa. Investor interest in our high-quality project pipeline remains robust. We target to complete the sale of certain solar power plants in Canada and China either by the end of 2016 or early next year and have started the sales process of our projects in the U.S. as our projects there reaching COD. This follows our sale of 80% of the equity in our 191.5 MWp Pirapora 1 solar power project in Brazil to EDF EN do Brasil, the local subsidiary of EDF Energies Nouvelles. Developing and transferring will be an important strategy in our downstream energy business as it bolsters our balance sheet, reduces market risk, and allows us to redeploy our capital, while providing an attractive return for our shareholders." Dr., Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Canadian Solar, added: "Our results for the third quarter reflect our disciplined business strategy and successful execution. Declines in wafer and cell ASPs, together with improved management in inventory control and manufacturing efficiencies, helped offset the impact of further module ASP declines. We continue to strengthen our capacity profile with selective investments in new wafer, cell and module plants. The work to restore our Funing cell factory is proceeding on schedule. We expect to have the first two of our ten production lines up and running by the end of 2016, and remaining production lines back in full production by the end of the first half of 2017. We continue to discuss the amount of our total damages claim with our insurers and have received prepayments totalingfrom the insurer. Importantly, all of the equipment we are installing features the latest production technologies." The Company divides its utility-scale solar project pipeline into two parts: an early- to mid-stage pipeline and a late-stage pipeline. The late-stage pipeline includes primarily projects that have energy off-take agreements and are expected to be built within the next two to four years. The Company cautions that some late-stage projects may not reach completion due to risks such as failure to secure permits and grid connection, among other risk factors. As of September 30, 2016, the Company's late-stage pipeline totaled 2.0 GWp of utility-scale solar project pipeline, which included 940 MWp in the U.S., 597 MWp in Japan, 390 MWp in Brazil, 38 MWp in China, 63 MWp in Mexico, 15 MWp in the United Kingdom and 6 MWp in Africa. In the United States, as previously announced, three projects (Barren Ridge, Mustang and Tranquillity) totaling 470 MWp reached commercial operation in the third quarter of 2016. Four other projects (Astoria 1, Astoria 2, Garland and Roserock) are currently under construction and are expected to reach commercial operation before the end of December 2016. In September 2016, the Company announced the signing of a 15-year power purchase agreement ("PPA") for 100 MWac, or 140 MWp, of its solar power project Tranquility 8 in California with MCE, California's first operating Community Choice Aggregation program. Construction of the project is expected to begin in 2017. The project will begin providing power to MCE by late 2018. The Company's late-stage utility-scale solar project pipeline in the U.S. as of September 30, 2016 is detailed in the table below. In Japan, during the third quarter of 2016, the Company started commercial operation of two solar power plants, with a total capacity of approximately 1 MWp. In November, a 24 MWp solar power plant started commercial operation. As of September 30, 2016, the Company's pipeline of late-stage utility-scale solar power projects totaled approximately 597 MWp with 191 MWp in construction and 66 MWp at the ready-to-build stage. As of September 30, 2016, the expected commercial operation schedule of the Company's late-stage utility-scale solar power projects in Japan is detailed in the table below. As of August 1, 2016, Canadian Solar had executed interconnection agreements for 397 MWp of projects. The Company expects that, by April 1, 2017, it will have executed interconnection agreements for an additional 130 MWp of projects, thereby securing the existing FIT contract subject to meeting the COD deadline. The Company is working to advance an additional 92 MWp of projects, so that the interconnection agreements can be executed by April 1, 2017 in order to secure the existing FIT contract. In Brazil, the Company's late-stage, utility-scale solar project pipeline as of September 30, 2016 is detailed in the table below. In October 2016, as previously announced, Canadian Solar sold 80% of equity interest in its Pirapora I solar project in Brazil to EDF EN do Brasil, the local subsidiary of EDF Energies Nouvelles. Canadian Solar will supply modules for this project from its new 360 MWp module factory established in Brazil to support the local market. In addition, during the third quarter of 2016, the Company connected a 5 MWp plant in the UK to the grid. In addition to its utility-scale solar project pipeline, the Company had a portfolio of solar power plants in operation totaling approximately 948 MWp as of September 30, 2016. Revenue from the sale of electricity generated by these plants in the third quarter of 2016 totaled $24.1 million, compared to $22.5 million in the second quarter of 2016. The resale value of these plants is estimated at approximately $1.4 billion, with an expected total profit margin contribution in low double digits. The Company cautions, however, that market conditions may change resulting in different sale values if and when the Company ultimately sells these plants. The sale of projects recorded on the balance sheet as 'Project assets' (build-to-sell) will be recorded as revenue once revenue recognition criteria are met, and the gain from sale of projects recorded on the balance sheet as 'Assets held-for-sale' and 'Solar power systems, net' (build-to-own) will be recorded within 'Other income (expenses)' in the income statement. During the third quarter of 2016, the Company adjusted its end of 2016 manufacturing capacity, as summarized in the table below. The Company's wafer manufacturing capacity has reached 1.0 GW, including 400 MW using slurry wire-saw and 600 MW using the new diamond wire-saw technology. The Company expects its wafer capacity to reach 1.3 GW by April 2017, all of which will use the diamond wire-saw technology. This is slightly behind the Company's previous schedule as the production capacity of the diamond wire-saw has to match with that of the black silicon surface treatment in the solar cell workshop. The diamond wire-saw technology works compatibly with the Company's proprietary and highly efficient Onyx black silicon multi-crystalline solar cell technology, reducing silicon usage and therefore manufacturing cost. The Company's cell manufacturing capacity as of the end of 2016 is expected to reach 2.4 GW, as compared to the 3.1 GW prior target. The decrease is primarily due to a delay in the construction of the Company's new 850 MW cell plant in Southeast Asia. While the module plant in the same compound went on line on schedule in September, the construction completion date of the solar cell plant has been extended to the first quarter of 2017. The decrease in the cell capacity will be partially offset by an earlier than expected partial resumption in production at the Company's Funing cell factory, which was damaged by a tornado in June 2016. The Company continues to expect that its internal module capacity will reach 5.8 GW by the end of 2016. The Company's business outlook is based on management's current views and estimates with respect to operating and market conditions, its current order book and the global financing environment. It is also subject to uncertainty relating to customer final demand and solar project construction schedule. Management's views and estimates are subject to change without notice. For the fourth quarter of 2016, the Company expects total solar module shipments to be in the range of approximately 1.4 GW to 1.5 GW, including approximately 30 MW of shipments to the Company's utility-scale solar power projects that may not be recognized as revenue in fourth quarter 2016. Total revenue for the fourth quarter of 2016 is expected to be in the range of $600 million to $750 million. Gross margin for the fourth quarter is expected to be between 11% and 16%. The recent demand for the Company's solar module products has been very strong. The shipment volume in the fourth quarter is impacted by the availability of the Company's solar module manufacturing capacities. The Company is overbooked for the current quarter and fully booked for the first quarter of 2017. As a result, the Company has to use third party solar modules for some of its own projects, in order to satisfy the demand from its solar module customers. The gross margin in the quarter is impacted by the loss-of-service of the company's 1 GW solar cell factory in Funning damaged by a tornado in June and the delay in construction of the company's 850 MW new cell factory in Southeast Asia. The company expects to bring the Funning cell factory partially back in service at the end of the year and fully back in service by June 2017. Meanwhile, the Company expects to start production on its new cell factory in Southeast Asia in the first quarter of 2017. The Company expects to complete the sale of certain utility-scale solar power plants in Canada and China either in the fourth quarter of 2016 or early 2017. The total value of these solar power plants is estimated at approximately $500 million with a blended gross margin in high teens. According to US GAAP, the Company expects to recognize approximately $150 million of the proceeds of these sales as revenue. The remaining proceeds, net of the book value of the projects, estimated at $50 million to $55 million, will be recognized as gain from sale of projects under 'Other income (expenses)' in the income statement. The actual figures may be different, subject to the adjustments at the final closing. The Company expects to reach the high end of its revenue and gross margin guidance if all these solar power plant sales are completed in the fourth quarter, or the low end of the revenue and gross margin guidance if all these projects sales are closed in 2017 instead. Accordingly, for the full year 2016, the Company expects its guidance for total module shipments to be in the range of approximately 5.073 GW to 5.173 GW, compared to 5.4 GW to 5.5 GW as previously guided. Management expects its revenue under US GAAP for the full year 2016 to be in the range of $2.78 billion to $2.94 billion, compared to $3.0 billion to $3.2 billion as previously expected. The updated revenue guidance is based on US GAAP, therefore, does not contain the sales of approximately $300 million of solar power plant assets, which may occur in the fourth quarter or early 2017, as previously discussed. Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Solar, remarked: "We remain confident in our long-term outlook and in our proven ability to navigate through disruptive, lower-visibility market environments. Canadian Solar has always emerged in a stronger position from these periods of market volatility. We will continue to invest in advanced technologies that will deliver even higher module efficiency. We expect to further benefit from our global brand and flexible capacity structure. Our track record of stability and consistent long-term execution sets Canadian Solar apart from our peers. Our financial partners share our confidence and positive outlook for the global solar industry. Our bankability is further underscored by our recent issuance of total RMB900 million commercial papers and entry into a JPY9.6 billion 3-year loan facility." On November 17, 2016, Canadian Solar announced that it has started the commercial operation of a 24 MWp solar power plant in Yamaguchi Prefecture, Japan. The plant is expected to generate approximately 28,487 MWh of electricity each year, which will be purchased by Chugoku Electric Power Company, under a 20-year feed-in-tariff contract at the rate of JPY40.00 (US$0.38) per kWh. On October 13, 2016, Canadian Solar announced that it had entered into a syndicated 3-year loan facility for JPY9.6 billion (US$95 million) with Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation as the lead arranger. The loan proceeds will be used to finance solar project development in Japan and for general corporate working capital requirements. On October 11, 2016, Canadian Solar and EDF Energies Nouvelles announced the sale of 80% interest in Canadian Solar's 191.5 MWp Pirapora I solar energy project in Brazil to EDF Energies Nouvelles' local subsidiary, EDF EN do Brasil. The project has started construction and is expected reach commercial operation in the third quarter of 2017. Canadian Solar will supply the modules for the project from its new 360 MWp modules factory established in Brazil to support the local market. On September 29, 2016, Canadian Solar announced the start of commercial operation of the 60 MWac/78 MWp Barren Ridge solar photovoltaic project developed by the Company's wholly owned subsidiary, Recurrent Energy. The Barren Ridge solar project, also known as the RE Cinco Project, supplies electricity and associated renewable energy credits to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power under a long-term power purchase agreement. On September 28, 2016, Canadian Solar announced that it was awarded US$3.5 million funding from Australian Renewable Energy Agency for two solar power projects, totaling 47MWp in Australia. The Company plans to start the construction of both projects in the first quarter of 2017 and achieve commercial operations no later than January 2018. On September 27, 2016, Canadian Solar announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Recurrent Energy, entered into a 15-year PPA for 100 MWac of solar power in California with MCE, California's first operating Community Choice Aggregation program. Construction of the project is expected to begin in 2017 and the project will begin providing power to MCE by late 2018. On September 26, 2016, Canadian Solar announced the start of commercial operation of the 200 MWac/258 MWp Tranquility solar power project in California. The Tranquility solar power project was developed by the Company's wholly owned subsidiary, Recurrent Energy, and is majority-owned by Southern Company subsidiary Southern Power. On September 21, 2016, Canadian Solar announced that it signed a financing agreement pursuant to which Export Development Canada has agreed to provide guarantees or letters of credit of up to US$100 million to Canadian Solar to support its global activities of project development. Royal Bank of Canada and Toronto Branch of China Construction Bank Corporation will serve as fronting banks on the facility. In September 2016, Canadian Solar issued a RMB400 million (US$60 million) commercial paper with a fixed interest rate of 5.5% and a tenor of one year and a RMB500 million (US$74.8 million) commercial paper for a term of 9 months with a fixed interest rate of 5.3%. The Company intends to use the proceeds from these issuances to repay debt and to enhance its working capital. China CITIC Bank Corporation Limited acted as the underwriter and bookrunner of the issuance. On August 23, 2016, Canadian Solar announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Recurrent Energy, reached commercial operation of the 100 MWac/134 MWp Mustang solar power project in Kings County, California. The Company will hold a conference call on Monday, November 21, 2016 at 8:00 a.m. U.S. Eastern Standard Time (9:00 p.m., November 21, 2016 in Hong Kong) to discuss the Company's third quarter 2016 results and business outlook. The dial-in phone number for the live audio call is +1 866 519 4004 (toll-free from the U.S.), +852 3018 6771 (local dial-in from HK) or +1 845 675 0437 from international locations. The passcode for the call is 98890711. A live webcast of the conference call will also be available on Canadian Solar's website at www.canadiansolar.com. A replay of the call will be available 4 hours after the conclusion of the call until 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, November 29, 2016, U.S. Eastern Standard Time (10:00 p.m., November 29, 2016 in Hong Kong) and the replay can be accessed by dialing +1 855 452 5696 (toll-free from the U.S.), +852 3051 2780 (local dial-in from HK) or +1 646 254 3697 from international locations, with passcode 98890711. A webcast replay will also be available at www.canadiansolar.com. Founded in 2001 in Canada, Canadian Solar is one of the world's largest and foremost solar power companies. As a leading manufacturer of solar photovoltaic modules and provider of solar energy solutions, Canadian Solar also has a geographically diversified pipeline of utility-scale power projects in various stages of development. In the past 15 years, Canadian Solar has successfully delivered over 17 GW of premium quality modules to over 90 countries around the world. Furthermore, Canadian Solar is one of the most bankable companies in the solar industry, having been publicly listed on NASDAQ since 2006. For additional information about the Company, follow Canadian Solar on LinkedIn or visit www.canadiansolar.com. Certain statements in this press release regarding the Company's expected future shipment volumes, gross margins, business prospects and future quarterly or annual results, particularly the management quotations and the statements in the "Business Outlook" section, are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. These statements are made under the "Safe Harbor" provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by such terms as "believes," "expects," "anticipates," "intends," "estimates," the negative of these terms, or other comparable terminology. Factors that could cause actual results to differ include general business and economic conditions and the state of the solar industry; governmental support for the deployment of solar power; future available supplies of high-purity silicon; demand for end-use products by consumers and inventory levels of such products in the supply chain; changes in demand from significant customers; changes in demand from major markets such as Japan, the U.S., India and China; changes in customer order patterns; changes in product mix; capacity utilization; level of competition; pricing pressure and declines in average selling prices; delays in new product introduction; delays in utility-scale project approval process; delays in utility-scale project construction; continued success in technological innovations and delivery of products with the features customers demand; shortage in supply of materials or capacity requirements; availability of financing; exchange rate fluctuations; litigation and other risks as described in the Company's SEC filings, including its annual report on Form 20-F filed on April 20, 2016. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in the forward looking statements are reasonable, it cannot guarantee future results, level of activity, performance, or achievements. Investors should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. All information provided in this press release is as of today's date, unless otherwise stated, and Canadian Solar undertakes no duty to update such information, except as required under applicable law. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/canadian-solar-reports-third-quarter-2016-results-300366451.html
News Article | May 19, 2017
PHOENIX--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Hundreds of nuclear technology industry leaders will meet next week in Scottsdale to discuss the future of nuclear energy. The Nuclear Energy Institute’s 64th Annual Nuclear Energy Assembly will take place just 75 miles away from the nation’s largest clean energy resource – the APS-operated Palo Verde Generating Station – which has served Arizona as America’s number one power producer for 25 straight years. APS will serve as host utility for this major industry conference and supplier expo May 22-24 at Westin Kierland Resort. During the conference, the company will participate in discussions on the future of nuclear energy, advanced technology and ways to educate the public about nuclear energy. The conference will also feature the annual meeting of the North American Young Generation in Nuclear (NAYGN). “These bright, enthusiastic engineers are the future of our industry,” said Bob Bement, APS Executive Vice President and Chief Nuclear Officer. “We welcome the opportunity to engage with this next generation of leaders and blend our experience with their fresh ideas for innovation and efficiency to even better serve our customers and contribute to a better energy future for Arizona.” In 2016, Palo Verde generated 32.2 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of carbon-free electricity; since it began operation in 1986, the plant has produced more than 810 billion kWh, providing environmentally friendly energy to more than 4 million people in four states. “What does that mean for APS customers and all Arizonans? It means fewer carbon dioxide emissions – 13.2 million metric tons fewer – or the equivalent of removing 2.8 million cars from our streets each year, which helps protect Arizona’s fragile desert environment. The plant also helps conserve Arizona’s precious water supplies. It is the only nuclear plant in the United States that does not sit on a large body of water, like an ocean, lake or river, so Palo Verde recycles wastewater from local towns and cities to meet the plant’s cooling needs,” said Bement. “As the producer of 80 percent of Arizona’s clean electricity, Palo Verde provides the foundation for the reliable service our customers count on, especially as we head into summer and Arizona’s most active weather season, which brings monsoon storms and wildfires, both of which can threaten power lines and service.” Palo Verde is a major economic engine for the state. The plant provides strong job opportunities, employing 2,600 APS workers, and it swells by another 800 contractors during biannual refueling outages. Its annual economic impact in Arizona is more than $1.8 billion through taxes, salaries, purchases of materials and services, and more. (That figure does not include the actual energy produced by the plant.) In addition, Palo Verde is the largest single commercial taxpayer in Arizona with taxes of more than $50 million. Just as Palo Verde embraces its young nuclear professionals, it is helping to develop a new generation of utility workers, partnering with Estrella Mountain Community College and West-MEC Southwest to educate and train high school students who are interested in nuclear power plant careers. With a forward-thinking mindset, Palo Verde is a thriving resource that provides the backbone to the western U.S. electrical grid. It is the only U.S. generating facility to ever produce more than 30 billion kWh in a year – an operational accomplishment Palo Verde has achieved each of the past eight years and a total of 12 times. The plant’s three reactors can generate more than 4,000 megawatts of safe, clean, reliable electricity every hour, and Unit 2 generated more electricity than any single unit in the world in 2016, according to industry statistics. Palo Verde is operated by APS and jointly owned by APS, Salt River Project, Southern California Edison Co., El Paso Electric Co., Public Service Co. of New Mexico, Southern California Public Power Authority and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. APS serves about 2.7 million people in 11 of Arizona’s 15 counties, and is the Southwest’s foremost producer of clean, safe and reliable electricity. Using a balanced energy mix that is nearly 50 percent carbon-free, APS has one of the country’s cleanest energy portfolios, including both Palo Verde Generating Station and renewable energy. The company is also a proven leader in introducing technology and services that offer customers choice and control over their energy consumption. With headquarters in Phoenix, APS is the principal subsidiary of Pinnacle West Capital Corp. (NYSE: PNW).
News Article | May 24, 2017
So far in 2017, increased hydroelectric generation and solar power generation in California have contributed to lower natural gas-fired power generation in the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) region, the electric system operator for much of the state. In a late April update to several state agencies responsible for planning and managing California’s energy reliability, Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) outlined its views regarding several assumptions and challenges for safely and reliably serving its customers in Southern California over the coming summer and winter. SoCalGas cited expectations of warmer-than-normal summer temperatures driving increased electricity demand as one of the factors raising potential energy reliability concerns. The ability to draw natural gas from storage fields in the SoCalGas system continues to be affected by operating restrictions on SoCalGas’s Aliso Canyon field, an underground natural gas storage facility with a capacity of 86 billion cubic feet (Bcf), or 64% of SoCalGas’s total storage capacity. This facility is still recovering from the leak that was initially detected in late October 2015 and plugged in February 2016. Following the leak, Aliso Canyon natural gas storage levels were reduced to about 15 Bcf, and total combined inventories at all of SoCalGas’s storage facilities remained about 60 Bcf throughout most of 2016. In June 2016, the California Public Utility Commission (CPUC) conditionally authorized SoCalGas to withdraw the remaining 15 Bcf at Aliso Canyon. Storage injections into that field would require additional regulatory approval. A total of 19 Bcf was withdrawn from the SoCalGas system from November 2016 through the end of March 2017, including withdrawals from Aliso Canyon during a two-day cold snap in late January. Over the five prior November-through-March periods, withdrawals averaged nearly 60 Bcf, ranging from 31 Bcf to 103 Bcf. As of May 16, SoCalGas’s inventory stands at 43 Bcf. The availability of natural gas in Southern California has implications for regional power generation. For most days so far in 2017, the share of CAISO’s electric power generated from natural gas has been near or below previous five-year (2012–16) minimums. The share of electricity generated from natural gas in CAISO typically reaches a low point in the spring, when temperatures are relatively mild, hydroelectric output is high, and electricity demand is relatively low. However, unseasonably warm weather in early May contributed to an 80% increase in natural gas use for power generation compared with daily averages in April. Warmer weather this summer will likely result in increased use of natural gas. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency’s (NOAA) forecast issued at the end of April expects a warmer-than-normal summer for California. During summer months, demand for electricity—driven by air-conditioning use—is typically at its highest. Increased hydroelectric output in the CAISO electricity market, along with continued increases from grid-connected solar power generators, has offset lower natural gas generation so far in 2017. Through May 8, California has averaged 38 inches of snow-water equivalent since the first of the year, about double the precipitation through that point in 2016. In the first four months of 2017, average daily solar output has increased by 27% over the same time period for 2016, according to EnergyGPS data. California energy market stakeholders—including the CAISO, the CEC, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, and the CPUC—will hold a Joint Agency Workshop on Energy Reliability in Southern California on May 22 to discuss summer energy reliability in Southern California. EIA publishes the Southern California Daily Energy Report to provide daily statistics on regional temperatures, electric power loads, natural gas flows, SoCalGas send-out, changes in SoCalGas inventories, and spot natural gas and electric power prices.
News Article | December 21, 2016
WASHINGTON - Several strong earthquakes around the world have resulted in a phenomenon called soil liquefaction, the seismic generation of excess porewater pressures and softening of granular soils, often to the point that they may not be able to support the foundations of buildings and other infrastructure. The November 2016 earthquake in New Zealand, for example, resulted in liquefaction that caused serious damage to the Port of Wellington, which contributes approximately $1.75 billion to the country's annual GDP. An estimated 40 percent of the U.S. is subject to ground motions severe enough to cause liquefaction and associated damage to infrastructure. Effectively engineering infrastructure to protect life and to mitigate the economic, environmental, and social impacts of liquefaction requires the ability to accurately assess the likelihood of liquefaction and its consequences. A new report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine evaluates existing field, laboratory, physical model, and analytical methods for assessing liquefaction and its consequences, and recommends how to account for and reduce the uncertainties associated with the use of these methods. When liquefaction occurs, wet granular materials such as sands and some silts and gravels can behave in a manner similar to a liquid. The most commonly used approaches to estimate the likelihood of liquefaction are empirical case-history-based methods initially developed more than 45 years ago. Since then, variations to these methods have been suggested based not only on case historical data but also informed by laboratory and physical model tests and numerical analyses. Many of the variations are in use, but there is no consensus regarding their accuracy. As a result, infrastructure design often incurs additional costs to provide the desired confidence that the effects of liquefaction are properly mitigated. The report evaluates existing methods for assessing the potential consequences of liquefaction, which are not as mature as those for assessing the likelihood of liquefaction occurring. Improved understanding of the consequences of liquefaction will become more important as earthquake engineering moves more toward performance-based design. "The engineering community wrestles with the differences among the various approaches used to predict what triggers liquefaction and to forecast its consequences," said Edward Kavazanjian, Ira A. Fulton Professor of Geotechnical Engineering and Regents' Professor at Arizona State University and chair of the committee that conducted the study and wrote the report. "It's important for the geotechnical earthquake engineering community to consider new, more robust methods to assess the potential impacts of liquefaction." The committee called for greater use of principles of geology, seismology, and soil mechanics to improve the geotechnical understanding of case histories, project sites, and the likelihood and consequences of liquefaction. The committee also emphasized the need for explicit consideration of the uncertainties associated with data used in assessments as well as the uncertainties in the assessment procedures. The report recommends establishing standardized and publicly accessible databases of liquefaction case histories that could be used to develop and validate methods for assessing liquefaction and its consequences. Further, the committee suggested establishing observatories for gathering data before, during, and after an earthquake at sites with a high likelihood of liquefaction. This would allow better understanding of the processes of liquefaction and the characteristics and behavior of the soils that liquefied. Data from these sites could be used to develop and validate assessment procedures. The study was sponsored by the Bureau of Reclamation, the Federal Highway Administration, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, American Society of Civil Engineers and the ASCE's Geo-Institute, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the Port of Long Beach, and the Port of Los Angeles. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine are private, nonprofit institutions that provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions related to science, technology, and medicine. They operate under an 1863 congressional charter to the National Academy of Sciences, signed by President Lincoln. For more information, visit http://national-academies. . A roster follows. Riya V. Anandwala, Media Relations Officer Rebecca Ray, Media Relations Assistant Office of News and Public Information 202-334-2138; e-mail email@example.com national-academies.org/newsroom Follow us on Twitter @theNASEM Copies of State of the Art and Practice in the Assessment of Earthquake-Induced Soil Liquefaction and Consequences are available at http://www. or by calling 202-334-3313 or 1-800-624-6242. Reporters may obtain a copy from the Office of News and Public Information (contacts listed above). Division on Earth and Life Studies Board on Earth Science and Resources Edward Kavazanjian Jr.1 (chair) Regents Professor and Ira A. Fulton Professor of Geotechnical Engineering School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment Arizona State University Tempe Jose E. Andrade Professor of Civil and Mechanical Engineering California Institute of Technology Pasadena Brian F. Atwater2 Geologist U.S. Geological Survey, and Affiliate Professor Department of Earth and Space Sciences University of Washington Seattle John T. Christian1 Consulting Engineer, and Professor Department of Environmental and Civil Engineering University of Massachusetts, Lowell Burlington Russell Green Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Blacksburg Ellen Rathje Associate Professor Department of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering University of Texas Austin James R. Rice1,2 Mallinckrodt Professor of Engineering Sciences and Geophysics Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences and School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Harvard University Cambridge, Mass.
News Article | December 19, 2016
SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--8minutenergy Renewables, LLC, (8minutenergy), the United States’ leading independent solar photovoltaic (PV) developer, and D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments, L.L.C. (DESRI), which, with its affiliates, owns and manages approximately 1.3 GW of renewable energy assets in North America, announced the commissioning of the 155 MW (191 MW ) Springbok 2 Solar Farm in Kern County, California. Springbok 2 joins the 105 MW (137 MW ) Springbok 1 Solar Farm, commissioned earlier this year. Located 70 miles north of Los Angeles, the two new solar farms combined are expected to supply enough clean, renewable energy to serve over 110,000 households in southern California through power offtake partner, Southern California Public Power Authority (SCPPA), on behalf of its participating member, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP). 8minutenergy originally developed the Springbok 2 Solar Farm while DESRI and its affiliates invested the majority of the equity in the project and arranged financing from a group of lenders and tax equity investors. Swinerton Renewable Energy (SRE) served as the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contractor, with construction management overseen by 8minutenergy and DESRI. “The Springbok solar projects are integral to meeting Los Angeles’s renewable energy targets of 25 percent by 2016 and 33 percent by 2020. We are pleased to have a project of this size, scope, and importance completed on-budget and ahead of schedule,” said Michael Webster, LADWP Executive Director of Power System Engineering and Technical Services. “At 8minutenergy, our goal is to deliver abundant, affordable renewable energy through impeccable execution of utility-scale solar PV and energy storage,” said Martin Hermann, 8minutenergy’s CEO and founder. “We are proud that Springbok 2 will deliver clean, renewable energy to tens of thousands of Californians.” “DESRI is thrilled to see its Springbok 1 and Springbok 2 projects reach completion and begin supplying clean power to southern California,” said Bryan Martin, CEO of DESRI. “We appreciate the hard work of all of our partners at LADWP, 8minutenergy, and Swinerton, as well as the support of our lenders and investors, in reaching this important milestone. DESRI is committed to the continued growth of our renewable energy portfolio so we can provide more U.S. homes and businesses with clean energy.” Springbok 2 Solar Farm is located on approximately 700 acres of abandoned farmland taken out of production more than 20 years ago. 8minutenergy began developing the project in 2011, creating an estimated 300 direct and 400 indirect jobs during construction in Kern County. The amount of greenhouse gas emissions expected to be avoided each year through operation of the projects is comparable to removing 111,000 cars from the road. “Projects like Springbok 1 and 2 produce affordable, locally generated electricity while providing significant benefits to the local economy through job creation and collaboration with area businesses,” said George Hershman, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Swinerton Renewable Energy. “Construction at Springbok 1 and 2 created over 700 jobs for Kern County and the surrounding area.” “The success of these projects in both providing positive economic impact and delivering clean energy to the region has been made possible by strong working relationships with SCPPA, LADWP, and the local Kern County Planning and Community Development Department as well as local community and environmental organizations for which we are grateful,” said Tom Buttgenbach, President of 8minutenergy. Founded in 2009, 8minutenergy Renewables is the nation’s largest independent developer of solar PV projects. To date, 8minutenergy has over 5.5 gigawatts under development in North America, been awarded more than 1.5 GW in power purchase agreements, and is developing some of the largest solar plants in the world, including the 800 MW Mount Signal Solar Farm in California. 8minutenergy has an unmatched ability to produce affordable clean energy and to deliver strong financial returns on utility-scale solar projects. For more information, please visit www.8minutenergy.com. D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments, L.L.C. (DESRI) and its affiliates acquire, own, and manage long-term contracted renewable energy assets in North America. DESRI’s portfolio of renewable energy projects currently includes more than 26 wind and solar projects that represent approximately 1,300 MW of aggregate capacity. DESRI is a member of the D. E. Shaw group, a global investment and technology development firm with more than $40 billion in investment capital as of October 1, 2016, and offices in North America, Europe, and Asia. Please visit www.deshaw.com for more information about the D. E. Shaw group. Swinerton Renewable Energy (SRE) offers engineering, procurement, construction, and SOLV® services for solar photovoltaic plants throughout North America to a diverse range of clients. Over 125 years of building landmark projects, Swinerton has forged a reputation for unsurpassed safety, workmanship, on-time delivery, and customer satisfaction. Today, our team takes pride in building cost-effective solar systems that will generate reliable, clean power for many years to come. SRE has delivered over 1 GW solar projects and our SOLV team manages over 3.25 GW of PV plants. Learn more about Swinerton Renewable Energy at www.swinertonrenewable.com.
Davis C.,Los Angeles Department of Water and Power |
O'Rourke T.,Cornell University
Earthquake Spectra | Year: 2011
Seismic response simulations of the Los Angeles water supply to a M w 7.8 San Andreas Fault earthquake scenario are used toassess the regional aqueduct and water distribution system performance in Southern California. Aqueducts sustain significant damage, and restoration of water flow is estimated to take between 4 and 18 months.Local emergency water supplies are insufficient to match the duration of aqueduct repairs, requiring severe water rationing. System serviceability declines rapidly due to numerous pipe leaks, causing serious difficulties for firefighting. Water service restoration to all customers is projected to take several months, with restoration of pre-earthquake water demand requiring more than a year. Business interruptions from long-term water rationing affect the regional economy greater than previously anticipated. Results from this scenario show how critical it is for all water agencies to prepare for a large-magnitudeSan Andreas earthquake. © 2011,Earthquake Engineering Research Institute.
News Article | September 29, 2016
Barren Ridge, also known as the RE Cinco project, supplies electricity and associated renewable energy credits to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) under a long-term power purchase agreement. The project’s electricity will power more than 25,000 homes in Los Angeles. US Bancorp’s Community Development Corporation made a tax equity investment into the Barren Ridge. The project’s electricity will help LADWP reach its 50% renewables mandate by 2030. In addition to building the Barren Ridge solar project, Recurrent Energy constructed two miles of generation transmission lines to connect the solar project to LADWP's Barren Ridge Switching Station. Recurrent, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Canadian Solar, required about one year to construct the facility, crating 230 peak construction jobs. GTM Research forecasts that US solar installations will more than double this year to 16GW from 7.3GW in 2015.
News Article | October 23, 2016
The Los Angeles City Council recently passed a unanimous resolution requiring Los Angeles Department of Water and Power – the largest municipally-owned utility in the country — to study how the city can achieve a 100% clean energy future. With help from research partners, including academic institutions, the U.S. Department of Energy, and environmental and consumer groups, the study has the potential to become a foundational roadmap for running the utility on only clean and renewable energy. California currently has a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40% below 1990 levels by 2030, with half of the state’s energy supply powered by renewable electricity by 2030. To achieve these targets, it is imperative for the state to look seriously at how to get off of fossil fuel dependency for our energy needs. Utilities and cities can be the key to reaching those climate goals. Mayor Garcetti’s LA Sustainability pLAn, sets even more stringent emission reduction targets than that of the state, calling on Los Angeles to reduce emissions by 45% by 2025, 60% by 2035, and 80% by 2050, all against a 1990 baseline. As one of eighteen U.S. cities committing to a clean energy future, L.A. is demonstrating tremendous leadership for others to follow suit. Getting off of Natural Gas California utilities currently rely on a massive amount of natural gas to generate electricity for millions of homes and businesses. The main component of natural gas is methane — a strong climate pollutant that has 80 times the warming power of carbon dioxide in the short-term. As the second largest natural gas consumer in the country, California’s methane pollution from natural gas transmission, distribution, and production is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. In 2014, the state’s oil and gas industry emitted approximately 270,000 tons of methane, nearly three times as much as was released by the Aliso Canyon storage facility in the recent disaster. This pollution has the same climate impact over the first 20 years after release as driving over 4.5 million cars for a year. There are also pressing public health concerns with the current energy system. Methane and volatile organic compound leaks from oil and gas facilities directly increase ozone smog levels, which aggravate asthma and other cardiac and respiratory ailments. And for three years straight, Los Angeles has been ranked the number one most contaminated city in the country for ozone pollution. Low-income communities, and communities of color are burdened with outsized health and climate impacts associated with both oil and gas industry activities, and from the massive combustion of natural gas to make electricity. In Los Angeles, nearly half a million Latinos live within a half mile of an oil and gas facility, and all live in an air basin where nearly 17 separate power plants combust gas to supply electricity. Latino children suffer thousands of asthma attacks and missed school days due to the methane pollution and ozone smog resulting from these far ranging oil and gas activities. Moving toward non-polluting renewable sources of energy means our most overburdened and vulnerable neighbors will benefit tremendously. The Clean Energy Opportunity is Ripe in the City of Angels LADWP delivers electricity and water to four million customers, supplying about a quarter of the electricity used in the state. Currently, only a quarter of Los Angeles is powered by renewable energy, mainly wind power, while the rest is powered by coal and natural gas. With last month’s announcement of the study — along with the new direction coming from the Los Angeles city council and statewide legislation by way of SB 350 and SB 32 — we now have a real opportunity to upgrade LADWP’s 100-year old system. The biggest obstacles to achieving the renewable energy goals revolve around how to effectively make a switch as fast as possible, while maintaining energy reliability and keeping customer bills manageable. In order to get the city’s renewable energy portfolio to 100%, there will need to be a significant increase in the rapid deployment of renewable technology, and it must be done so in a way that minimizes costs. LADWP is already committed to getting off of coal completely by 2025. Now, as the renewable energy portfolio gets built up in Los Angeles, the same kind of commitment needs to happen for natural gas. The good news is that the clean technology currently does exist, and continues to advance at lightning speed. Despite these challenges it is clear that switching to clean energy is vital for reducing anthropogenic climate impacts, as well as alleviating community health impacts. If the second largest city in the country can successfully transition into a full green economy, then Los Angeles will set a clear example of what steps must be taken to achieve this outcome in other metropolises. Our climate and our communities need this kind of leadership now.
News Article | November 14, 2016
LOS ANGELES, Nov. 14, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Court-appointed independent monitor Paul Bender has now verified $67,500,000 in charges the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) overbilled its customers. “But we are not done,” said consumer rights attorney Jack Landskroner of Landskroner Grieco Merriman. “$67,500,000 is a floor. This amount only addresses the verified credits and refunds customers can automatically receive.” Landskroner negotiated the landmark class action settlement which will provide consumers a 100% recovery of any amount LADWP overbilled. The overcharges were created by a new computer billing system consultant PricewaterhouseCoopers implemented at the utility in 2013. “The settlement also creates a process enabling consumers to make claims for additional damages caused by overbilling,” added Landskroner. Last December, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle gave conditional preliminary approval to the landmark settlement which was originally estimated to involve at least $44,700,000 in overbillings. He also appointed Bender, a utility billing expert, to validate the methodology used to identify over-billed customers and how much they are owed. “Mr. Bender’s team has unrestricted access to the LADWP computer servers,” said attorney Tom Merriman. “LADWP’s leadership team has fully cooperated, but our commitment is to verification.” Attorneys from Landskroner’s law firm and analysts from Bender’s consulting firm have spent the past eleven months pouring through data, reviewing internal documents, and questioning LADWP staff about their billing procedures. The settlement also requires LADWP to spend an additional $20,000,000 to implement reforms set forth in the agreement. Landskroner has continued to push for further reforms and more extensive oversight by the independent monitor. “If you include the cost of reforms, the settlement is now approaching $90,000,000,” said Landskroner. Following a mediation conducted by U.S. District Judge Dickran M. Tevrizian, attorneys for lead Plaintiff Antwon Jones and the LADWP jointly submitted an updated settlement agreement last week in which: “This is not a drive-by settlement,” said Landskroner. “We are in this for the long haul. We are going to continue to push to make sure the mandated reforms are fully implemented.” “The monitor’s authority to address the past organizational dysfunction is critical,” added Merriman. “Mr. Bender’s oversight of the Tiger Team is a big step towards confronting some of the issues which cause consumers the greatest frustration.” Judge Berle will conduct a preliminary approval hearing at 1:30 pm on November 18, 2016. If preliminary approval is granted, consumers would receive letters within ninety (90) business days indicating the amount they were overbilled as verified by the Court-appointed monitor. Consumers would also receive a notice explaining their rights under the terms of the settlement. Landskroner Grieco Merriman, LLC. is a law firm whose practice areas includes consumer class action litigation and securities fraud. Jack Landskroner is a board certified trial advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy and has been counsel in class action cases litigated across the country. In 2012, Jack Landskroner was elected national President of the Public Justice Foundation; a 3,000-member organization's that undertakes nationwide efforts to secure court access for ordinary people and justice in civil rights and civil liberties, environmental protection, consumers' rights, food health and safety, and workers' rights cases with widespread impact. Landskroner has repeatedly been honored as a "Super Lawyer" and a "Top-Rated Lawyer" by his peers and has been recognized as a “litigation Star” by Benchmark Plaintiff publication. For more information, visit www.lgmlegal.com.