Regulators to Review Market Design and Reliability Following 2021 Polar Vortex

Background Over Presidents’ Day weekend 2021, an unprecedented cold weather event hit the Midwest and South central United States. The storm led to major disruptions to infrastructure throughout the region, including icy road conditions, frozen pipes, and an estimated 3 million Texans still without power. [1] This is the result of a confluence of circumstances, including but not limited to frigid temperatures freezing generation and transmission equipment, shortages in natural gas supply and energy demand greatly exceeding supply, and Texas’ practice of operating separately from the rest of...

Notice of EPA Approved Texas NPDES Oil and Gas Program Authorization Published in Federal Register on February 12, 2021

On Friday, February 12, 2021, Region 6 of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) published notice in the Federal Register at 85 FedReg 9332 (February 12, 2021) of its January 15, 2021, approval the State of Texas’ October 12, 2020 submittal to the EPA requesting partial National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) program authorization for oil and gas discharges (“Notice”). Here is the link to the Notice . A summary of actions leading up to the approval and general information related to the authority of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (“TCEQ”) to...

FERC Directs RTOs and ISOs to File Reports on Hybrid Resources

On January 19, 2021, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC” or “Commission”) issued an order directing each Regional Transmission Organization (“RTO”) and Independent System Operator (“ISO”) to submit information regarding hybrid resources, or resources comprised of multiple types of generation and/or storage technologies utilizing a single interconnection point. [1] Specifically, FERC directed RTOs and ISOs to submit reports addressing four issues related to hybrid resources: (1) market participation; (2) capacity valuation; (3) interconnection; and (4) terminology. [2] The...
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Nigeria's upstream petroleum sector: looking back at 2020 and looking ahead in 2021

We review what happened in Nigeria’s upstream petroleum sector during the previous year – a year that saw a new marginal field bid round, an oil price crash and the onset of a terrible global pandemic. We also consider what we can expect in 2021 and if this will be the year the Petroleum Industry Bill finally overhauls the sector. What happened in legal matters? Upon his re-election in 2019, President Buhari set out an ambitious plan to pass the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) by the end of 2020. He did not achieve that. However, progress was made: the PIB passed its second reading in both the...

FERC Issues Notice of Inquiry on Possible Expansion of Accounting and Reporting Requirements for Renewable Energy Assets

On January 19, 2021, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) issued a notice of inquiry to explore the treatment of accounting for certain costs associated with renewable energy assets. [1] Specially, FERC seeks comments from the public on whether FERC should: (1) create new accounts in the Uniform System of Accounts (“USoA”) to include costs associated with non-hydro renewable assets such as solar, wind and biomass; (2) modify FERC Form No. 1 to reflect any accounts ultimately created; and (3) update its accounts to reflect costs related to renewable energy credits (“RECs”)...

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