Coal, Emissions, Energy Storage, New Projects, News, Renewables

AES Corp. says it’s curbing coal-fired generation mix this decade

International power generator AES Corp. announced that it plans to reduce coal-fired generation to below 30 percent of its portfolio by the end of this year and down to 10 percent by the end of the decade.

Virginia-based AES details its carbon reduction target during the company’s quarterly and annual earnings report this morning. AES reported 2019 adjusted earnings of $1.36 per share, which is above the previous year’s EPS.

Perhaps the most dramatic element of the AES earnings report is the move toward a significantly greater portion of energy storage, wind and solar in its future generation mix. The company is off and running by signing 2.8 GW of new renewables power purchase agreements (PPAs) in 2019.

Fluence, which is the AES joint venture with Siemens focused on energy storage, delivered or was awarded 1.1 GW of projects in 2019, according to the release.

“We are leading the global energy transition by completing 2.2 GW of new projects, adding 2.8 GW to our backlog, and expanding our LNG infrastructure in the Dominican Republic, Panama and Vietnam,” Andres Gluski, AES president and CEO, said in a statement. “At the same time, we are delivering innovative energy solutions through Fluence, Uplight, and a strategic partnership with Google. As a result, today we are announcing that we are accelerating our decarbonization goals for the Company and will aim to reduce our coal-fired generation to below 30 percent of total MWh by year-end 2020 and to less than 10 percent by 2030.”

In 2019, AES sold its Shady Point coal-fired plant in southeastern Oklahoma (pictured) to OG&E. AES subsidiaries such as Dayton (Ohio) Power & Light have announced plant closures in recent years.

The company upped its mix of renewables last year with wind and solar PPAs in the U.S., Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Panama and Brazil. It also completed its own projects in India and Mexico.

AES Corp. owns and operates power generation in 14 nations. On the conventional side, it is helping develop combined cycle gas turbine plant in Vietnam and is working on liquified natural gas projects there and in the Dominican Republic.