Duke Energy Asks FERC to Approve MISO as ICT for Duke Facilities; Entergy and SPP Come to Terms on ICT Agreement

In a partial concession to FERC's insistence that transmission-owning utilities surrender operational control of their transmission systems to independent operators, on July 22, 2005, North Carolina-based Duke Energy asked FERC to approve amendments to its open-access transmission tariff ("OATT") that would allow the Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator ("MISO") to act as an Independent Coordinator of Transmission ("ICT") for Duke's transmission facilities. Under Duke's proposal, MISO would oversee and administer - but not operate -Duke's transmission grid. MISO would not have the...

Entergy Will Not Renew Market-Based Rate Authority

Entergy Services has notified FERC that it no longer seeks market pricing authority for its wholesale sales of power, and will instead charge cost-based rates for power sales in its home territory. The move leaves Southern Company, of the three utilities originally cited by FERC for market power concerns in 2001, as the only utility still seeking to maintain its market-based rate authority. Entergy's decision to abandon its market-based rate application concludes a protracted dispute that began in 2001, when FERC abandoned its "hub-and-spoke" test for market power and instituted the "supply...

California PUC Loosens Deliverability Requirement for Renewables

To help the state's investor-owned utilities satisfy the law requiring them to obtain from renewable resources 20 percent of the power needed to service their retail customers, the California Public Utilities Commission ("CPUC") recently relaxed its former rule that all of that renewable power must be deliverable to the utility's own service territory if it is to be counted toward the 20 percent. Now the requirement can be met so long as the utility has a transmission path sufficient to deliver the renewable generation to some point within the larger footprint of the California ISO. The CPUC...

Illinois' Newly-Adopted Sustainable Energy Plan Addresses Renewable Portfolios and Energy Efficiency

The Illinois Commerce Commission ("ICC") has adopted a sustainable energy plan modeled largely after the plan that Governor Rod Blagojevich proposed last February. Illinois joins a growing list of states whose regulatory agencies have implemented Renewable Portfolio Standards ("RPSs"), including neighbors Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin. In addition to the RPS outlined in the Plan, the new measure also contains a complementary Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard ("EEPS"). The voluntary RPS asks that utility companies obtain two percent of their energy needs from renewable sources by 2006, and...

Supreme Court Decision Backs FCC Ruling Deregulating Broadband Cable Modem Providers that Bundle Telecommunication with Internet Access

In a decision noteworthy for its implicit encouragement of bundling traditional utility network service with competitive goods and services, contrary to the regulatory course charted in recent years for pipelines, local telephone exchanges and electric transmission grids, a divided (6-3) U.S. Supreme Court recently affirmed a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) declaratory rule that exempts from common-carrier regulation providers of broadband cable modem service because of the bundling of the telecommunications component of that service with internet applications. The majority decision...

Pages