What We’re Thinking

What We're Thinking


Posted on 09/25/2017 by Sarah Bray, Madeline Gould

There is a powerful trend happening across the country at the state level where large utilities like PacifiCorp, Xcel Energy and, AEP have decided to build new transmission infrastructure to deliver large amounts of onshore wind energy to market.  Most recently, AEP announced a 4.5 billion wind + transmission project in Oklahoma.  Why is this?  Because it lowers rates for consumers and because there is strong upside for utilities to own and rate base the generation and transmission.  It makes economic sense for all.


Posted on 08/22/2017 by Sarah Bray, Madeline Gould

It is now mainstream for consumer-facing companies to buy renewable energy, with nearly two-thirds of Fortune 100 companies having set ambitious renewable energy goals. In addition, 48% of all Fortune 500 companies have targets in place regarding renewable energy, carbon reductions, or energy efficiency—this number is up from 43% in 2014[1]. According to the Rocky Mountain Institute, about 8 gigawatts of renewables on the grid today have resulted from C&I demand. Just this month, Target™ announced it will buy 100 megawatts of output from an Infinity Renewables wind farm in Kansas. The clean wind generation will offset power use at 150 Target stores in the area.


Posted on 04/27/2017 by Michael Skelly

Last week, I had the opportunity to attend the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the opening of the new Sediver manufacturing facility in West Memphis, Arkansas. This brand new, $15 million facility will be manufacturing toughened glass insulators for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line and other high-voltage transmission lines across the U.S.


Posted on 01/25/2017 by Allison Copple

“Missouri municipalities, Wal-Mart, Missouri consumer organizations, and others’ involvement in our application affirms the tremendous long-term public benefits the Grain Belt Express will provide, if Missouri regulators allow it to proceed,” said Michael Skelly, President of Clean Line Energy.

Guest Blog: GE Energy Connections President and CEO Russell Stokes

Posted on 11/1/2016 by Russell Stokes

Clean energy has experienced its largest growth in expansion and consumption in the last few years and will continue to grow in years to come. It’s no longer a question of whether renewables will be part of our energy mix but how fast and efficiently we will make it happen.  I happen to agree with GE’s Renewables chief that renewable energy has gone mainstream.  But what does that mean for the grid of the future?

Clean Line Energy and GE Energy Connections join forces for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line

Posted on 11/1/2016 by Allison Copple

Clean Line Energy and GE Energy Connections today announced their collaboration in the development of America’s largest clean energy infrastructure project, the Plains & Eastern Clean Line. The transmission project will be the first overhead high voltage direct current (HVDC) project in the U.S. in more than 20 years.

Clean Line Energy Establishes Scholarship at Northeastern State University

Posted on 10/18/2016 by Jason Thomas

In September, Clean Line visited with students and faculty of the College of Business & Technology at Northeastern State University (NSU) in Tahlequah, Oklahoma to announce a new annual $2,500 scholarship that will be awarded to a full-time Environmental Health and Safety senior who has demonstrated an interest in renewable energy and preservation of American Indian Tribal culture.

Plains & Eastern Clean Line begins Insulator Testing Program

Posted on 07/14/2016 by Dr. Wayne Galli,P.E.

Insulators serve two critical roles in the operation of a transmission line.  They provide a mechanical connection by which the electrical conductors are physically hung from the transmission structures, and they provide the electrical separation (insulation) between the energized conductors and the transmission structures which are grounded. Clean Line recently completed testing on insulator assemblies for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line. Once testing is complete, and all assemblies are approved for manufacture, Clean Line can issue notice to proceed to suppliers to begin production to meet the Plains & Eastern Clean Line’s in-service date of late 2020.

Fortune 500 companies back Grain Belt Express Clean Line

Posted on 06/30/2016 by Allison Copple

General Motors, Target, Unilever, Procter & Gamble, Kellogg’s and Nestlé, announced their support for the Grain Belt Express in conjunction with the project’s application with the Missouri Public Service Commission (PSC). Missouri is the last of four states where approval is needed for the Grain Belt Express project; regulatory commissions in Kansas, Illinois and Indiana have approved the project.

Missouri municipalities expect to save $10 million annually as a result of the Grain Belt Express

Posted on 06/23/2016 by Mark Lawlor

With the price of wind energy two-thirds cheaper than it was in 2009, wind power has become one of the lowest cost sources of energy in certain regions of the country, according to Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and that has increasing appeal to organizations with goals both to lower emissions, and to secure low-cost, fixed-price energy that protects them from fuel price fluctuations.

Department of Energy, Clean Line Partnership Represents a Win for Energy Infrastructure

Posted on 04/19/2016 by Beth Conley

The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) is the only Washington, DC think tank that promotes bipartisanship. Two BPC Senior Fellows, Senator Pete Domenici and Senator Byron Dorgan, have been vocal in their support of the Department of Energy’s decision to participate in the Plains & Eastern Clean Line project. BPC recognizes that our nation’s energy infrastructure needs significant investment to enable new clean and reliable electricity. The Bipartisan Policy Center has called this decision an “innovative public-private partnership that will be instructive as a model going forward”. Click here to read more.

The next step: modernizing the U.S. energy grid

Posted on 03/31/2016 by Sarah Bray

The United States is blessed with some of the most abundant, productive wind resources in the world. It’s one of the reasons that we produced more electricity with wind than any other country in 2015, and why we have enough wind energy to power 19 million American homes.


Posted on 02/8/2016 by Kent Riley

A recent study conducted by Leidos, a national leader in energy research, concluded that the Plains & Eastern Clean Line transmission project will create a reduction in Arkansas electricity production costs of $65 million in the first year of the project’s operation alone. The study examined the impact of 3,500 megawatts of wind delivered by the Plains & Eastern Clean Line to the Tennessee Valley Authority and other southeastern utilities, and 500 megawatts (MW) of wind power delivered to the Arkansas electric grid. The study also showed that the Plains & Eastern Clean Line will reduce air pollution in Arkansas.

How a wind turbine works

Posted on 08/18/2015 by Beth Conley

Iowa is at the heart of the nation’s wind industry, and is literally the crossroads of America. Anyone taking a trip across Iowa on I-80 or I-35 will drive through miles and miles of wind farms.  My job requires that I spend a lot of my time driving across the state and meeting with landowners and community representatives.  One topic that is always of interest is understanding how wind turbines work. Our friends at SaveOnEnergy.com have put together a simple and informative guide about the science of wind turbines.

Clean Line to Bring Millions of Dollars in Savings to Electricity Markets in Missouri and Illinois

Posted on 05/14/2015 by Allison Copple

Wholesale power prices in both Missouri and Illinois will be reduced by millions of dollars if the Grain Belt Express Clean Line receives the go-ahead from the state regulatory commissions. Clean Line commissioned Leidos Engineering to study the effect of the Grain Belt Express project on power markets in Illinois and Missouri.

DOE Releases Wind Vision: A New Era of Wind Power in the U.S.

Posted on 03/13/2015 by Beth Conley

Yesterday the White House and the U.S. Department of Energy released Wind Vision: A New Era of Wind Power in the United States, a definitive report showing that wind energy can become one of America’s largest sources of electricity, while saving consumers money. The report updates and builds upon the 2008 report “20% Wind Energy by 2030”, outlining successes of the wind energy industry since the initial report and setting forth aggressive targets for the continued growth of the industry.

DOE Releases Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Plains & Eastern Clean Line

Posted on 01/7/2015 by Jason Thomas

We were very pleased to close 2014 with DOE’s release of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Plains & Eastern Clean Line project pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Getting to this stage in the development of the project involved a multi-year process that included input from thousands of stakeholders and a tremendous amount of analysis and thought. You can see more information on the routing process here.

STEEL - The Backbone Of The Plains & Eastern Clean Line

Posted on 10/23/2014 by Louis Pitre

Check out our infographic to learn about how our Plains & Eastern Clean Line project will benefit the steel industry.

Missourians Show Support for Bringing Clean Energy to the State

Posted on 09/29/2014 by Allison Smith

“I want my grandchildren to know that I did everything I could to support clean energy development. Grain Belt Express Clean Line wants to serve the public good in Missouri by bringing enough low-cost wind energy to the state to power 200,000 homes. It will be cheaper and require less government intrusion to do a little now than a whole lot that will have to be done by future generations.”

Marvin Tomlinson, Resident, Caldwell County

Transformation in Motion - Clean Line at AWEA WINDPOWER 2014

Posted on 05/14/2014 by Amy Kurt

Here’s the vision: double our country’s wind energy by 2020, and boost it to 20 percent wind by 2030 and up to 35 percent by 2050.  That is the goal the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) laid out at its annual WINDPOWER conference last week. More than 8,000 leaders from all aspects of the wind energy industry joined together to collaborate on how we can achieve that goal. 

Plains & Eastern Clean Line Moves Forward with Design Work with Field Measurements in OK and TN

Posted on 05/5/2014 by Deral Danis

This week, Clean Line Energy and HVDC engineering consultants, TransGrid Solutions (TGS), took an important step in the design of the Plains & Eastern Clean Line with the task of measuring the background harmonic voltages that exist in the electric grid at the points where the Plains & Eastern Clean Line HVDC Project will interconnect. 

Clean Line Participates in 2014 MS 150 Bike Race

Posted on 04/17/2014 by Allison Smith

This past weekend, the Clean Line Energy team cycled 165 miles from Houston to Austin to support the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. It was Clean Line’s third year to sponsor a team and my third year as team captain. This year we had our biggest team yet—folks from TradeWind, Keiwit, SWCA, Lock Lord, E.ON, and other companies joined us for the two-day ride. Together we raised $21,000 for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society!

Citigroup Report on The Age of Renewables

Posted on 04/17/2014 by Kent Riley

Last month, Citigroup published a report on renewable energy that’s been creating a lot of media buzz. It is no wonder, considering their catchy subtitle: “The Age of Renewables is Beginning.” 

Georgia Power Requests Affordable Wind Power For Customers

Posted on 03/18/2014 by Chris Hardy

Last week, Georgia Power  executives argued in favor of bringing new wind energy to Georgia consumers at the Public Service Commission (PSC). Georgia Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company, is asking the Commission to approve two contracts to import 250 megawatts (MW) of wind power from southwestern Oklahoma, enough to power more than 50,000 Georgia homes. The Sierra Club notes, “these wind purchases are cheaper than other forms of electric generation already on the grid and will put downward pressure on rates.”  A decision is expected from the Georgia PSC on May 20, 2014, and delivery would begin in 2016.

Creating Missouri Jobs with Grain Belt Express Clean Line

Posted on 01/30/2014 by Diana Rivera

Big infrastructure projects like Grain Belt Express create jobs and economic opportunities - in manufacturing, construction, maintenance, and through property taxes over the long term. To ensure that the states that host Grain Belt Express will benefit as much as possible from the project, we’ve looked for local manufacturers that could make the components we hope to construct in Missouri.

It didn’t take us long to realize, Missouri builds America’s grid. And they do it very well.

Thanks to Our Supporters in Kansas

Posted on 11/12/2013 by Michael Skelly

This week, the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) granted Grain Belt Express Clean Line the right to construct the Kansas portion of the transmission line. We are very pleased with the KCC Order and grateful to the Commission for their careful consideration of our application and proposed route.

Educating Young Minds at the 2013 Energy Day Festival

Posted on 10/23/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

On Saturday October 19, Clean Line Energy participated in the 2013 Energy Day Festival, hosted by the City of Houston, Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) and the University of Houston. Approximately 20,000 people attended the fun and interactive event where students and their families had the opportunity to learn about various forms of energy, scientific breakthroughs, and technology through educational displays, demonstrations, contests and presentations.

Southwest Power Pool Transmission Working Group Approves Grain Belt Express Reliability Studies

Posted on 09/16/2013 by Jonathan Abebe

After two years of working closely with the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) regional transmission organization, and affected parties, the SPP Transmission Working Group (TWG) passed a motion accepting that the Grain Belt Express Clean Line reliability studies completed to date have met the coordinated planning requirements.

Lazard’s Levelized Cost of Energy Report Shows Continued Decline of Wind Costs

Posted on 09/10/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

Lazard is known for its strong understanding of financial trends in the energy industry. Last week, Lazard released a report on the levelized cost of energy from, various generation sources.

Department of Energy Releases 2012 Wind Technologies Market Report

Posted on 08/14/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

“As the fastest growing source of power in the United States, wind is paving the way to a cleaner, more sustainable future that protects our air and water and provides affordable, clean renewable energy to more and more Americans,” said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz.

New WIRES Study Highlights Benefits of Building Transmission

Posted on 07/29/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

WIRES and The Brattle group  recently released a new study highlights the full range of potential economic, reliability, environmental, and public policy benefits of new and upgraded transmission  For the first time, transmission planners and policy makers now have a catalogue of benefits and techniques that can be used to evaluate which projects will serve customers and the economy best when developing regional plans.

Clean Line Energy Signs Agreement with ABB to Manufacture Transformers in Missouri

Posted on 07/10/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

Clean Line Energy has designated ABB as the preferred supplier to manufacture alternating current (AC) transformers for the Grain Belt Express Clean Line’s transmission collector system. ABB plans to manufacture the transformers at its St. Louis, Missouri facilit

President Obama Announces Climate Change Plan

Posted on 06/25/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

Earlier today at Georgetown University, President Barack Obama announced his national plan to combat climate change. Among other initiatives, the President plans to address climate change by limiting carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants, and increasing the production of renewable energy on public lands. None of the steps President Obama announced require congressional approval. President Obama’s goal is to reduce carbon pollution by at least 3 billion metric tons cumulatively by 2030 – more than half of the annual carbon pollution from the U.S. energy sector.

Clean Line Issues RFI to Wind Generators in the Oklahoma Panhandle Region

Posted on 06/20/2013 by Louis Pitre

We are pleased to announce that on June 20, Plains & Eastern Clean Line issued a Request for Information (RFI) to wind generators in the Oklahoma Panhandle region. The RFI will gather information about generators’ demand for the Plains & Eastern’s transmission capacity and collect data that will allow us to characterize the wind resource and production potential of the Oklahoma Panhandle region.

Working to Preserve Illinois Land

Posted on 05/30/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

At Clean Line, we believe in developing our transmission line in a methodical and transparent manner. We are pleased to announce that we have signed an Agricultural Impact Agreement with the Illinois Department of Agriculture.

Big Ideas and Earth Day

Posted on 04/22/2013 by Sarah Bray

Earth Day began as a simple idea from a student named Dennis Hayes. With the support of Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin and Congressman Pete McCloskey of California, Dennis Hayes' simple idea transformed in to a huge movement. Together, they organized the first Earth Day in 1970 where approximately 20 million Americans rallied together to bring attention to air and water pollution and to build support for a healthy, sustainable environment. Today, hundreds of millions of people in over 7,000 cities and 150 countries will participate in Earth Day to show their support for a cleaner environment. A simple idea turned into a global movement.

Update from the Grain Belt Express Clean Line

Posted on 04/10/2013 by Allison Smith

It’s been a busy start of 2013 for the Grain Belt Express Clean Line team. We have much to report about development efforts over the past several months, and we’d also like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued engagement in the process. We value public involvement every step of the way and remain committed to developing the project in an open and transparent manner.

The Long-Term Hedge Value of Wind Power

Posted on 03/28/2013 by Alex Landon

Lawrence Berkeley National Lab recently released a report called “Revisiting the Long-Term Hedge Value of Wind Power in an Era of Low Natural Gas Prices.”

Plains & Eastern Clean Line - clean and affordable energy for the Mid-South and Southeast

Posted on 03/20/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

Plains & Eastern Clean Line - Clean and Afrodable Energy for the Mid-South and Southeast

Infographic: Rock Island Clean Line Benefits to Illinois

Posted on 02/14/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

To learn more about the Rock Island Clean Line, visit www.rockislandcleanline.com

Wind + Transmission = Consumer Benefits

Posted on 02/8/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

Bloomberg analysts highlight in a recently released fact book on the clean energy industry that the U.S. power generation is rapidly shifting towards renewable energy due to the reductions in the costs of renewables. Clean Line Energy believes that adding wind energy to the power mix reduces electricity prices, helps prevent future price shocks, and makes the energy market more competitive. Across regions, wind power production costs are dropping and the savings are passed on to consumers. We have created a handout to highlight the cost-effectiveness of wind energy in the electric grid.

Grain Belt Express Clean Line Public Meetings in Kansas

Posted on 01/16/2013 by Louisa Kinoshi

This week, the Grain Belt Express Clean Line team was in Kansas meeting with over 150 local vendors and potential suppliers to the Grain Belt Express Clean Line project. Clean Line Energy is committed to using local and in-state contractors, service providers, and materials from the project area states whenever possible during the construction of our projects. The Grain Belt Express Clean Line team will be back in Kansas again from January 29 – February 1st to host public open house meetings in Kansas.

National Grid and Clean Line Energy

Posted on 11/27/2012 by Michael Skelly

We are delighted to announce that National Grid, one of the largest investor-owned energy companies in the world, will be making a $40 million equity investment in Clean Line Energy. Clean Line is working hard to prove out the thesis that the development of long distance direct current transmission projects are a much needed addition to the U.S. electric grid, and having an investor of National Grid’s caliber will help us take another step forward in building the right infrastructure for the 21st century. 

Leaders Discuss the Future of Clean Energy and Transmission in the Southeast

Posted on 11/14/2012 by Louisa Kinoshi

Businesses and consumers in the Southeast have a growing appetite for low-cost clean energy. The Southeast’s largest energy provider, Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), which provides power to nearly all of Tennessee and other Southeastern states, is now importing wind from eight wind farms in the Midwest. Alabama Power, a subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company, last year made one of the largest wind purchases ever from producers in Oklahoma. Leaders in government and the private sector will come together today to discuss the energy future of the Southeast; the current status of transmission planning in the region; and the potential for renewable energy in Tennessee

The National Environmental Policy Act as a Guide for Proper Planning

Posted on 10/22/2012 by Jason Thomas

In this current era of lengthy environmental regulations, it is hard to imagine a brief policy being passed by Congress. But the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA, achieved sweeping reform in barely three pages. While it is clear that the authors intended to bring environmental issues into national focus, they could not have predicted that their little-noticed bill, aimed at federal government actions, would also give a voice to the budding conservation movement and lay the groundwork for best practices in project planning.

The California Transmission Upgrade Debacle

Posted on 09/10/2012 by Daniel Hodges-Copple

Today, GreenTech Media published my response to a column by Sam Maslin on “The California Transmission Upgrade Debacle.” 

Rock Island Clean Line Meets with Potential Contractors and Suppliers in Iowa

Posted on 09/6/2012 by Louisa Kinoshi

This week, I had the chance to travel with the Rock Island Clean Line team across the state of Iowa for local business open house meetings. The Rock Island Clean Line held over six meetings in Sioux City, Fort Dodge, Des Moines, Waterloo, Cedar Rapids and Davenport.  It was great to talk to potential suppliers and contractors about the Rock Island Clean Line transmission line project, and learn more about their capabilities.

Clean Line Employees Participate in Transmission Hub Webcasts

Posted on 08/7/2012 by Sarah Bray

Transmission Hub and WIRES joined forces to host Reshaping the Western Grid: Overcoming Key Transmission Issues, a four-part free webcast series.  Topics covered have included compliance with FERC Order No. 1000, planning and cost allocations, advanced technology, renewables integration, permitting, project risk management, and much more.  Clean Line employees Keith Sparks Dave Berry participated in the webcasts.

Discussing HVDC Trends at Electrical Engineering Conference in San Diego

Posted on 08/7/2012 by Dr. Wayne Galli,P.E.

Deral Danis and I attended the 2012 IEEE PES (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Power and Energy Society) General Meeting in San Diego, CA.  The conference was attended by over 3,000 industry and academic professionals from around the world and always provides a great venue for interacting various utility engineers and executives as well as a chance to see where the latest and greatest research is headed.  The conference also features a fairly intensive student program for graduate and undergraduate engineering students to attract interest to the power and energy engineering field.

National Review Op-Ed: Wind Power

Posted on 07/18/2012 by Jimmy Glotfelty

Yesterday, my op-ed debunking the myths surrounding wind energy was featured in The National Review Online. The article responds to Robert Bryce’s NRO piece, “Economists Without Calculators.” I labeled Mr. Bryce’s piece as “yet another of his recycled, questionable diatribes on the wind power industry.”


Posted on 06/18/2012 by Louis Pitre

So, you want to know more about FERC Order No. 1000 and how it will affect the merchant segment of the transmission industry .  When it first came out, Clean Line wanted to know if Order No. 1000 would usher in a new wave of transmission development or, at a more basic level, would make what we’re doing easier.


Posted on 01/23/2012 by Dr. Wayne Galli,P.E.

Today, we are faced with a similar challenge.  Clean energy is essential to fuel our economy and keep it moving forward.  The lowest cost alternative is land-based wind from the Plains states of the United States.  The most effective means of moving large amounts of electric energy over long distances is through direct current (DC) technology.

Welcome to Our Blog

Posted on 11/23/2011 by Michael Skelly

This is an incredibly exciting time to be developing infrastructure projects. We have had a good month, with Oklahoma stepping out...