A brutal storm ripped through southwestern Minnesota in April and snapped 2,000 power poles. Worthington Public Utilities kept the lights on with a seat-of-the-pants microgrid.
Pat Packs a Punch
FERC's new chairman runs roughshod over a reeling industry.
report if utilities need file only once a year?
On questioning, the FERC's technical staff admitted that the NOPR was just "giving the utilities a place to put the numbers." Even Wood seemed a bit sheepish. He doubted that investors would want to look to FERC for this type of information, and instead suggested they look to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
"Is this agency moving from a consumer protection role," he asked, "to a role where counterparties can rely on FERC data?"
FERC Order 2000
Jennifer Alvey reports that on Dec. 11, 2001, after our Jan. 1 issue went to press, the D.C. Circuit dismissed appeals of Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Order 2000, but offered some useful guidance to certain aggrieved parties.
As the court explained, Order 2000 imposed "no mandatory requirements." In other words, utilities could not claim any injury from the order, as it required them only to describe efforts, if any, to participate in a regional transmission organization (RTO). Nor would they suffer if FERC should deny authority to charge market-based rates to any utility not joining an RTO-again, since utilities can make their own choice about whether to join.
Public Utilities Fortnightly