FERC Pushes Ahead on Prevention of Market Abuse and Works to Increase Transparency in Energy Markets

FERC issued a series of proposals and rules May 25 that will streamline and assist FERC in collecting various kinds of information, as well as a change to the calculation of that essential metric: available transfer capacity ("ATC") on the transmission grid. FERC Chair Pat Wood expressed his belief that these orders would benefit both customers, by improving market transparency, and the electric industry, by ensuring that FERC's reporting requirements are "useful and necessary." Two of the issuances included two Notices of Inquiry ("NOI"). In Docket No. RM05-16 , FERC issued a NOI seeking...

Dominion Successfully Integrates into PJM

On May 1, 2005, at 12:01 a.m., Dominion, the largest utility in Virginia , successfully transferred operational control of its 6,000-plus miles of high-voltage transmission lines to PJM Interconnection, LLC (PJM). Dominion's transfer follows the integration of the Duquesne Light transmission system earlier this year, as well as the Commonwealth Edison, American Electric Power, and Dayton Power & Light transmission systems, which occurred in 2004, making PJM the nation's largest regional transmission organization. As a result of the transfer, PJM now manages the dispatch of generation and...

FERC Says the Court Was Confused in Affirming Generator Interconnection Decision on Remand

Responding to a judicial demand that FERC explain an apparent change in policy, FERC decreed on May 6 that its 2002 order providing GenWest LLC (GenWest) transmission credits for network upgrades built to interconnect with Nevada Power Company's (Nevada Power) grid was no change at all. Beginning with FERC's mid-1990s orders mandating that transmission-owning utilities open their systems to third parties, FERC has generally required that the costs of constructing upgrades to interconnect a customer be spread across all network customers, provided the upgrades are beneficial to the...

Reductions of Power Plant Emissions on the Minds of State Regulators

Reducing power plant emissions seems to be the priority du jour , as several state regulatory agencies consider plans to comply with the EPA's new clean air interstate rule ("CAIR"). Passed in March of this year, CAIR permanently caps sulfur dioxide ("SO2") and nitrogen oxide ("NOx") emissions in the eastern United States , by providing for SO2 rductions of 70 percent and NOx reductions of 60 percent by 2015. This past April, the Ozone Transport Commission ("OTC"), a multi-state organization created under the Clean Air Act encompassing the Northeast and the Mid-Atlantic states and the...

FERC Issues Small Generator Interconnection Rule

In its Order No. 2006, issued May 12, FERC established standard procedures for interconnecting generators no larger than 20 MW. This order continues the process begun in Order No. 2003 of standardizing the terms and conditions of open-access interconnection service. The new procedures apply to small generators seeking to interconnect with transmission systems that are subject to an open-access tariff at the time the generator's request is made. Order No. 2006 requires public utilities to amend their open-access transmission tariffs ("OATTs") to include a Small Generator Interconnection...

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