Category

Electricity

Electricity, Infrastructure, Podcast

Columbia Energy Exchange: Barry Perry

Barry Perry is a chief executive from a remote region of Canada whose company is gradually becoming a major player in North America’s electric power industry. We sat down recently for a discussion on the Columbia Energy Exchange podcast. From St. John’s, Newfoundland, the oldest city in North America, Perry runs Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned utility in Canada. Since 2004, the company’s assets in Canada, the U.S. and the Caribbean have grown ten-fold to $48 billion. Fortis’ most recent acquisition, one that really put it on the map in the U.S., was ITC, the biggest electric transmission company in America, at a price of $11.3 billion. We visited with each other during one of his visits to Washington to talk about the electric and natural gas business in the U.S. and Canada, the different energy policies of the two…

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Article, Climate, Electricity

Coal comeback unlikely after Paris climate pact withdrawal: utility CEO

From USA TODAY President Trump once again promised to revive the U.S. coal industry when he announced his intention to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement. But that reversal seems as unlikely as ever as electric power producers, the biggest consumers of coal in the U.S., continue to shift to natural gas and renewable energy sources like solar and wind power. In 2016, natural gas became the leading fuel for U.S. electricity generation for the first time, responsible for 33.8% of the output, compared with 30.4% for coal, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Nick Akins, the CEO of American Electric Power, one of the largest utilities in the U.S., says the preference for gas, renewables and energy efficiency, will only grow in response to increasing demands from shareholders and customers for cleaner energy, regardless of changes in…

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Blog, Electricity, Natural Gas, Oil

Oil and gas M&A off to strong start in 2017

Investor interest in U.S. oil and natural gas soared in the first quarter of 2017, as measured in mergers and acquisitions. The professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers reports $73 billion in announced deals for the quarter, representing a striking 160% increase in deal value compared to results in the first quarter of 2016. That’s a record high for oil and gas deals in the first quarter of any year since PwC began tracking such activity in 2002. “Pleased by a pro-energy policy agenda taking shape, reassured by the relative steadiness of the price of oil, and encouraged by advances in shale technology, investors entered 2017 with renewed optimism,” PwC says in a report released April 20. The surge was driven by the upstream segment, with the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico continuing to stand out. In all, PwC cites…

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