The decision to limit mercury provides cover for utilities reluctant to spend on controlling NOx and SO2, while boosting other companies
"This ISO, like any other, is like Swiss cheese," said Massey. "It's got gaping holes. Larger and more contiguous would be better. The proponents and the PUCs asked the FERC to help them achieve that, but we punted on this issue. I personally would have gone further here, asking for a staged plan for consolidating the control areas."
Sparby (whose company supported the Alliance transco) and Carraway questioned how the ISO would ensure compliance by the 30 separate control areas operated by the member utilities. "A single transmission owner in an ISO will never build transmission to serve other areas," added Sparby. "There's no incentive."
Walton appeared to agree. "The Midwest [order] fails to answer a fundamental question: How can federal power marketing agencies be pulled into ISOs?" Walton warned, "Part of why Indego fell apart was because some of the control area operators did not want to give up control."
Bruce W. Radford is editor of Public Utilities Fortnightly.
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