FERC Adopts Expanded Definition of Cogeneration QFs to Include Certain Fuel Cell Systems

On December 17, 2020, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) adopted a final rule (“Final Rule”) [1] regarding the potential for certain fuel cell systems to attain qualifying facility (“QF”) status pursuant to Sections 201 and 210 of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978, as amended (“PURPA”) [2] . The Final Rule slightly amends the underlying proposed rule , issued on October 15, 2020 and discussed in greater detail here , in response to comments that the proposed rule would have applied to an overly-narrow subset of fuel cell technologies. In the Final Rule, the...
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FERC Proposes Incentive-Based Rate Treatment for Cybersecurity Investments

On Thursday, December 17, 2020, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NOPR” or “Proposed Rule”) seeking comment on proposals that would allow public utilities to make a filing pursuant to Section 205 of the Federal Power Act (“FPA”) to seek incentive-based rate treatment for certain cybersecurity investments made to improve the security of the Bulk-Power System (“BPS”). [1] The NOPR follows a white paper published by FERC staff in June 2020, which expressed concern that the promulgation of mandatory reliability standards in accordance with...
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EPA Draft Guidance Memorandum on the Application of County of Maui

On December 8, 2020, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) released a draft guidance memorandum (“Draft Guidance”) to provide guidance to the regulated community and permitting authorities, including the EPA, on applying the recent decision of the United States Supreme Court (“Court”) on County of Maui v. Hawaii Wildlife Fund , 140 S. Ct. 1462 (2020) (“ Maui County ”), in the Clean Water Act (“CWA”) Section 402 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) permitting program. EPA notes that the Draft Guidance only addresses discharges of pollutants that reach waters of...

FERC Offers Limited Clarifications on its PURPA Reform Order

By a November 19, 2020 Order on Rehearing, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC” or “Commission”) clarified a discrete set of issues arising from its landmark July 2020 order (“Final Rule”) modifying the Commission’s regulations implementing the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 (“PURPA”). [1] For a more thorough review of the Final Rule, which becomes effective December 31, 2020, please see our previous post . In the Order on Rehearing, the Commission clarified six specific aspects of the Final Rule: (1) certain circumstances requiring small power production...

LIBOR LATEST - A Temporary Reprieve for USD LIBOR?

Often referred to as “the world’s most important number”, the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) is used as the reference interest rate for a range of commercial and financial contracts worth hundreds of trillions of dollars globally. As market commentators and regulators have been highlighting for many months, the scale and complexity of the LIBOR replacement exercise requires all market participants to prepare for a coordinated transition as soon as possible. As we enter into the final month of 2020, one of the strangest and most challenging years in recent history, the issue of the...