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Special Report

Fortnightly Magazine - January 1 1997

Cowart had warned that utility proposals to form Independent System Operators (ISOs) would not suffice to guarantee "independent" operation of the transmission grid, but in San Francisco it became apparent that some commissioners thought the resolution went too far, while others believed it contained more than they could support. Most commissioners have yet to examine what needs to go into an ISO. Some regions are weighing costs and benefits of opening up markets and haven't considered using ISOs to open up transmission.

•  Consumer Protection (Whose Turf?). The association resolved to support customer "right-to-know" and product-labeling standards in the retail electric market. The resolution leaves open whether the labeling (em for price and energy resource comparisons (em would fall to federal or state jurisdiction. Asked if such standards could be incorporated into federal U.S. Rep. Dan Schaefer (R-CO) said it was a possibility.

•  Nuclear Waste (No Friend of DOE). Although sill unsure of its exact plans, NARUC appeared ready to consider filing a friend-of-the-court brief to support federal litigation against the Department of Energy for its "anticipated breach of the January 31, 1998, obligation to begin accepting spent nuclear fuel."

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•  ISO Plans (Wait and See). The electricity and energy conservation committees killed support for the "Declaration of Independence," a grassroots initiative proposed initially by Vermont board chair Richard Cowart at a NARUC meeting in Santa Fe on October 22. The proposal later won approval from 18 commissioners in 10 states. Cowart had warned that utility proposals to form Independent System Operators (ISOs) would not suffice to guarantee "independent" operation of the transmission grid, but in San Francisco it became apparent that some commissioners thought the resolution went too far, while others believed it contained more than they could support. Most commissioners have yet to examine what needs to go into an ISO. Some regions are weighing costs and benefits of opening up markets and haven't considered using ISOs to open up transmission.

•  Consumer Protection (Whose Turf?). The association resolved to support customer "right-to-know" and product-labeling standards in the retail electric market. The resolution leaves open whether the labeling (em for price and energy resource comparisons (em would fall to federal or state jurisdiction. Asked if such standards could be incorporated into federal U.S. Rep. Dan Schaefer (R-CO) said it was a possibility.

•  Nuclear Waste (No Friend of DOE). Although sill unsure of its exact plans, NARUC appeared ready to consider filing a friend-of-the-court brief to support federal litigation against the Department of Energy for its "anticipated breach of the January 31, 1998, obligation to begin accepting spent nuclear fuel."

Articles found on this page are available to Internet subscribers only. For more information about obtaining a username and password, please call our Customer Service Department at 1-800-368-5001.

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