CINERGY MERGER CONDITIONS. FERC allows two-year deferral of prior requirement (a condition of the 1993 Cinergy merger) for Cincinnati Gas & Electric Co. and PSI Energy Co. to build a 345-kV transmission line by 2000 to link territories to guarantee central dispatch for generation. Cinergy says it can now duplicate the capacity with open access. FERC Chair James Hoecker concurs, citing "further evidence that the bulk power market is working." (Docket No. EC93- 6-004, Sept. 24, 1997)
Hydro Licensing. Commission denies city of Idaho Falls the right to build a 10.3-MW hydroelectric generating plant on Snake River, finding threats to fish and wildlife outweighing project benefits. Opponents include state of Idaho, the U.S. Interior Dept. and Shoshone-Bannock tribes. (Docket No. P-5090-005, Sept. 24, 1997.)
Power Marketers. British Columbia Power Exchange, an affiliate of British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority, wins OK to operate as power marketer in U.S. after FERC finds mitigation of market power by filing of Canadian transmission tariff similar to pro forma tariffs under Order 888. Intervenors say constraints on Alberta/BC Intertie still perpetuate market power, but FERC defers to Canadian jurisdiction. Chair Hoecker says U.S. entry by Powerex is good for consumers. (Docket Nos. ER97-4024-000, EL95-62-000, Sept. 24, 1997.)
Sales to Affiliates. Commission imposes three conditions for Detroit Edison Co. to sell power at negotiated rates (subject to a cost-based cap) to its affiliate, DTE Energy Trading: (1) Rate must be no lower than market-based rate that Detroit Edison charges to non-affiliates; (2) Any discounts below the cost-based ceiling must be offered to nonaffiliated customers, through an electronic bulletin board; (3) Edison must also post cost-based prices charged to DTE, simultaneous with each transaction. (Docket No. ER97-3832-000, Sept. 24.)
Gas Purchase Prudence. With dissent from Vicki Bailey, FERC reverses law judge decision and second-guesses Williams Natural Gas Co., ordering company to refund $15 million to customers, finding Williams failed to understand rights under market-out clauses in reforming three 15-year-old gas purchase contracts. Bailey thought actions were reasonable at the time. Hoecker finds need to second-guess when "business decisions are so egregious." Williams says it will appeal ruling. (Docket No. RP94-365-000, Sept. 24.)
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