Using a trial-based approach to improve a project’s chances before state siting boards.
Barry Needleman and Vincent Dick
Project development isn’t getting any easier. Using a trial-based approach can improve a project’s chances before state siting boards. And time-tested principles of planning, discovery, and argument lay the groundwork for an effective appeal.
MATS compliance now, with flexibility for the future.
Conflicting demands for complying with EPA’s MATS rule favor a single control technology to deal with multiple types of power plant emissions.
Virginia brings a new coal-fired plant online.
Reports of coal’s demise are exaggerated. This summer, Dominion cleared the regulatory gauntlet to start up a new coal plant. Whether the example can be replicated might hinge on state incentives—and the forward price of natural gas.
The Homer City decision increases uncertainty—but rewards forward thinking.
The D.C. Circuit’s CSAPR ruling reinforces the benefits of planning ahead and keeping options open. A diverse portfolio strategy reduces risks and costs.
But transmission planning, as we know it, may never be the same.
The recent landmark ruling on transmission planning cost allocation, known as “Order 1000,” and issued by the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in late July 2011, could well produce an unintended side effect — the formation of regional compacts among states to identify needs and plan for development of new power plant projects.
Utility-scale projects suffer growing pains.
Michael T. Burr, Editor-in-Chief
Anyone who’s been watching the solar power industry for more than a few years can’t help but be impressed by the recent explosion of large-scale projects. It seems akin to the rapid scale-up of wind in the late 1990s and early 2000s—when megawatt-scale turbines became standard-issue, and the definition of a “large” wind farm changed from a capacity of 20 MW to something more like 200 MW.
Waste fuels struggle despite coal’s decline.
Fuel supply might be the biggest barrier to scaling-up biomass power generation, but it’s by no means the only problem. Utility projects to repower coal-fired plants face permitting challenges, ballooning technology costs and strained economics. Some owners are giving up the fight.
State case has national implications for grid modernization.
Strict adherence to cost-of-service ratemaking led to what might be considered a Luddite decision in the Maryland PSC’s initial rejection of BGE’s smart-grid filing. More than 60 years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that ratemaking calls for “pragmatic adjustments” to regulatory policy, toward the goal of sensible and effective rate orders. Delaying modernization doesn’t serve the aims of customer choice, conservation or electric system efficiency.