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POLITICO New York Energy: Nuke subsidies start -- Offshore wind cost -- NYC floating farm

By David Giambusso and Marie J. French | 04/03/2017 09:58 AM EDT

Good morning! You are reading a complimentary synopsis of the POLITICO New York Pro Energy newsletter. Pro subscribers receive a premium version of this newsletter, which includes an enhanced look-ahead and robust analysis of the energy news driving the day, weekdays at 5:45 a.m. Contact us here to learn more.

NUKE SUBSIDIES START — Newsday's Mark Harrington: "Utilities across the state on April 1 begin collecting billions of dollars from ratepayers to subsidize three upstate nuclear plants, including one partly owned by LIPA, as part of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's energy strategy. LIPA is not regulated by the Public Service Commission, and it didn't have to pay the assessment but agreed to do so voluntarily. LIPA trustees approved the plan at the state's request last year after the state strategy was approved by the Public Service Commission. While the new charge will increase the power supply portion of bills by $1.85 a month for average residential customers, lower natural gas prices this month will more than offset the new charge, PSEG Long Island said. Accordingly, bills actually decline slightly next month." Read more here.

— Larger commercial and industrial power users, such as New York Air Brake in Watertown, could face significantly more in utility costs. "The Air Brake facility uses roughly 7 million kilowatt-hours per year. For the last two years, Air Brake did receive about $43,000 in energy credits from the New York Power Authority to help offset some energy costs, but the program is slated to end the same day ratepayers will be charged for the subsidies. Thus, Air Brake is looking at $65,000 in new energy costs in 2017."

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BUDGET UPDATE: No final deal had emerged as of late Sunday but all signs point to a big water infrastructure package — more than $2 billion. Stay tuned for coverage as we head into overtime beyond the governor's self-declared "grace period." Read the latest here.

... A draft document obtained by Spectrum's Nick Reisman laid out specific line-items for $2.5 billion in funding ..." Read more here.

LIPA WIND FARM WILL COST — Newsday's Mark Harrington: "The plan to build an offshore wind farm to provide energy for the South Fork has received approval by the state comptroller, with a listed price tag to ratepayers of more than $1.62 billion." Read more here.

FLOATING FARM IN NYC — Bloomberg's Nikki Ekstein: "If you always thought Central Park needed more edible plants, you're in luck." Read more here.


— Waterfront dump site a nightmare for Queens residents who say lot is toxic. DEC is investigating.

— The transfer of the FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant to its new owner, Exelon, is officially complete.

— The backlash against President Donald Trump's proposal to eliminate funding for the Great Lakes is building.

— The longtime attorney for Hoosick Falls said "no money exchanged hands" as a result of the acquisition of his practice by a Glens Falls law firm that negotiated with two companies blamed for polluting the village's water supplies.

— March's fierce storms devastated parts of the Lake Ontario shoreline, in the process freshening anger about high water and the new government plan to regulate the lake's levels.

— The first boat in New York City's new fleet of commuter ferries arrived in the city on Sunday morning, completing a voyage from Alabama that was slowed by a side trip through some Florida mud.

— Manhattan's population of red-tailed hawks is on the rise.

— The city of Mount Vernon has entered into an agreement with the state to clean up contaminated soil at the long-closed Memorial Field and pay a $40,000 fine.

— North Hempstead's Town Council is proposing a ban on all-terrain vehicles in response to residents' concerns and to protect park grasslands.

— Tompkins County residents welcome renewable energy projects, with some reservations.

— There is prime trout fishing in western New York, thanks to the Randolph Fish Hatchery that keeps the area's streams and lakes stocked with brown, brook and rainbow trout.

— It's not just injured animals that need protection. A New York historian seeks to save the "Scythe Tree" in Waterloo, which grew around three scythes from the Civil War.

— VIDEO: Opening day of trout season.

— EDITORIAL: The Lockport Journal says the Public Service Commission should nix National Fuel's rate hike request.

— EDITORIAL: The Albany Times Union bemoans the lack of climate action at the national level while vaguely encouraging New York leaders to use RGGI money to make New York "a magnet for alternative energy research, development, and manufacturing."

SOME TRIBES HOPEFUL FOR TRUMP PROMISES — The New York Times' Julie Turkewitz: "When thousands of Native Americans converged near the Standing Rock Indian Reservation last year, their stance against the Dakota Access oil pipeline became a global symbol of indigenous opposition to the pro-drilling, pro-mining agenda that Mr. Trump adopted. But some of the largest tribes in the United States derive their budgets from the very fossil fuels that Mr. Trump has pledged to promote ..." Read more here.

EVEN DEEPER EPA CUTS? — The Washington Post's Juliet Eilperin, Chris Mooney and Steven Mufson: "The Environmental Protection Agency has issued a new, more detailed plan for laying off 25 percent of its employees and scrapping 56 programs including pesticide safety, water runoff control, and environmental cooperation with Mexico and Canada under the North American Free Trade Agreement." Read more here.

DAKOTA PROTEST TACTICS USED AGAINST OTHER PROJECTS — The Associated Press: "Prolonged protests in North Dakota have failed to stop the flow of oil through the Dakota Access pipeline, at least for now, but they have provided inspiration and a blueprint for protests against pipelines in other states." Read more here.

OHIO ZEC PUSH — Crain's Cleveland Business' Dan Shingler: "The cost of supporting some of the region's aging nuclear power plants might be about to land on the bills of Ohio ratepayers, and that might include the cost of subsidizing a nuclear plant in Pennsylvania owed by Akron-based FirstEnergy Corp." Read more here.

BIG OIL STRUGGLING TO BREAK EVEN — The Wall Street Journal's Sarah Kent: "The world's biggest oil companies are struggling just to break even." Read more here.

OIL SPILL DISCOVERED IN ALASKA — The Associated Press: "An oil leak was discovered in Alaska's Cook Inlet on Saturday, causing a major oil and gas producer to shut down two of its platforms there, officials say." Read more here.

TESLA SHIPMENTS BEAT ESTIMATES — Bloomberg's Dana Hull: "Tesla Inc. set a record for deliveries and production in the first quarter, beating analysts' estimates as Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk prepares to begin building the Model 3 in July." Read more here.

ENERGY PRODUCTION DROPS — ArsTechnica's Megan Guess: "On Friday, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that US energy production in 2016 fell by 4 percent, with fossil fuel production contributing to most of that decline." Read more here.

COLUMN: COAL'S DIRTY SECRET — Bloomberg's David Fickling: "Demand for the dirtiest fuel is on the wane." Read more here.

GRIZZLIES EXPANDING RANGE — The Associated Press: "Grizzly bears continue to expand their range amid an ongoing effort to turn over management of the bears from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to the states of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho, a federal official said." Read more here.

PLEASE MIND THE SALAMANDERS — The Associated Press: "Vermont wildlife officials are warning motorists to drive with caution due to the seasonal migrations of frogs and salamanders." Read more here.

MORE THAN 200 DEAD IN COLOMBIA FLOOD, LANDSLIDE — The Wall Street Journal's Sara Schaefer Muñoz and Kejal Vyas: "In boats, in helicopters and on foot, Colombia's army and emergency response teams continued their search Sunday for survivors of a flood and mudslide in remote Putumayo state that left more than 200 people dead and more than 200 others missing, officials said." Read more here.

TERRITORIAL DISPUTE JEOPARDIZES IRAQI OIL OUTPUT — Bloomberg's Sam Wilkin: "A territorial dispute in northern Iraq threatens to disrupt oil output at a field containing as much crude as Norway, even as U.S.-backed forces prepare what could be a decisive blow against Islamic State militants in the nearby city of Mosul." Read more here.

OPEC DEAL SLOWS RUSSIA PRODUCTION — Bloomberg's Jake Rudnitsky: "Russia cut its crude production in March, moving closer to fulfilling its agreement with OPEC as the deadline approaches." Read more here.


Domestic oil settled up Friday, capping a recent rally but Brent was down the Wall Street Journal reports.

"Light, sweet crude for May settled up 25 cents, or 0.5%, at $50.60 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, its highest settlement since March 7.

— Natural gas held steady and was up on the week despite closing lower Friday, the Journal reports.

"Natural gas for May delivery settled down 0.1 cent, or 0.03%, at $3.19 a million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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