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Commission Watch

FERC's AEP ruling begs the question: Can the feds bypass states that block transmission reform?
Fortnightly Magazine - January 2004

believes it would create a "peculiar" situation that would be costly to implement without any real benefit to consumers. But DP&L concedes that DP&L still intends to proceed toward integration into PJM concurrently with AEP. -L.A.B., B.W.R.

Other Commission News

Standards of Conduct A final rule was adopted by FERC setting standards of conduct that will apply uniformly to natural gas pipelines and transmitting public utilities. The rule governs the relationship between transmission providers and their energy affiliates. It retains the exemption in Order 889 permitting a utility transmission provider to use the same employee for its interstate transmission business and bundled retail sales business. FERC clarified that if a retail sales function employee engages in any wholesale sales, such as selling excess generation off system, the exemption will not apply. Docket o. RM01-10-000, 105 FERC 61,248, Order No. 2004, Nov. 25, 2003 (F.E.R.C.).

El Paso Corp. Settlement FERC approved a settlement calling for El Paso Corp. to pay $1.6 billion to resolve the California PUC's complaint alleging El Paso withheld natural gas supplies into California, affecting prices for both gas and electricity during the state's energy crises in 2000 and 2001. El Paso does not admit any alleged violations as part of the settlement, which is subject to modification. Docket Nos. RP00-241-000 et al., 105 FERC 61,201, Nov. 14, 2003 (F.E.R.C).

Market Behavior Rules FERC issued a set of market behavior rules designed to prevent market abuse, provide a more stable energy marketplace, and create an environment that will attract needed investment to the gas and electric industries. If a seller were found to have engaged in prohibited behavior, the seller would be subject to disgorgement of unjust profits plus non-monetary remedies such as revocation of a seller's market-based rate authority or blanket certificate authority. Docket Nos. EL01-118-000 and EL01-118-001, 105 FERC 61,218, Nov. 17, 2003 (F.E.R.C.) and Docket No. RM03-10-000, Order No. 644, 18 CFR Part 284, issued Nov. 17, 2003, effective 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.

New England Markets FERC accepted a joint filing by the New England Power Pool and ISO New England to implement a Forward Reserve Market in New England, which will enable the advance market-based purchase of 10-minute non-spinning and 30-minute operating reserves, thereby allowing suppliers with off-line resources a method to receive compensation for the reliability services they provide. Docket No. ER03-1318-000 and ER03-1318-001, 105 FERC 61,204, Nov. 14, 2003 (F.E.R.C.).-L.B.


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