The new transmission siting and permitting policies could be just as messy and unruly as the old ones.
Richard Stavros, Executive Editor
The idea behind the NIETC is a noble one: to help facilitate the construction of badly needed transmission capacity to relieve congestion problems and improve reliability. In fact, the promotion of new infrastructure investment is at the heart of EPACT. But there’s just one problem. The new process for permitting and siting electric transmission under EPACT appears to be as flawed and contentious as it was pre-EPACT.
U.S. imports make up the fastest-growing segment of the industry. Are we prepared?
Gary L. Hunt and Hans Daniels
The renewed interest in coal as a fuel source for power generation will increase coal demand by up to 4 percent a year for the next 20 years. With so much coal produced domestically in this country, why are utilities choosing to import coal from producers located hundreds or thousands of miles from their plants?
Mixed signals leave developers wary of building new infrastructure.
Richard Stavros, Executive Editor
FERC Chairman Joseph Kelliher gives mixed signals that leave developers wary of committing to investments in new infrastructure, given his clear desire to affect positive change, while appearing to argue for policy decisions that are politically safe but arguably inconsistent.
Critics say its new budget and business plan could simply duplicate the work of RTOs.
FERC granted formal certification to NERC as the nation’s sole ERO and reliability czar, making it inevitable that NERC would delegate the job of regional enforcement to its various regional reliability councils, already constituted. To understand why FERC acted as it did, turn back the clock nearly a decade.
An analysis of what risks would have to be taken to significantly reduce carbon emissions by using natural gas in the short run.
An analysis of what risks must be taken, in the short run, to significantly reduce carbon emissions with use of natural gas.
What federal regulators should do to ensure security, reliability, and cleaner air in our nation’s capital.
Sheila Hollis and Ilia Levitine
The District of Columbia Public Service Commission successfully has used two little known provisions in the Federal Power Act (FPA) to prevent an aging generating plant crucial to the national capital region’s reliability from being abruptly shut down by Virginia’s environmental regulators. In the end, the immediate threat to the region’s reliability was obviated while the environmental concerns associated with the plant were not ignored. The action resulted in a model for how federal energy regulators and environmental regulators can address similar problems in the future.
Incandescent light bulbs create a cogeneration benefit by warming the indoor spaces they illuminate.
Genuine price signals about the underlying cost of consumer energy usage are an important part of energy efficiency. With those signals, consumers can adapt to save high-cost energy, while making better use of available low-cost sources and supplies.
Innovation must play a key role in each company.
Clark W. Gellings and Steve Hoffman
An EPRI vice president cites areas of concern in each part of the electricity value chain. How can IOUs overcome the formidable difficulties ahead of them?
Climate risks are entering the calculus for utility investment strategies.
Utilities are eager to invest in new power capacity—in part to build rate base and in part because they recognize the danger of relying too much on a single fuel source. Environmental issues, however, are adding greater complexity to company strategies for achieving fuel diversity.
As NERC’s CIP standards advance, utilities move ahead, haltingly, with implementation.
Utilities are preparing for the eventual enforcement of new reliability rules from the North American Electric Reliability Council. As the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission continues its review of the proposed standards, we take a closer look at the effect of these rules on cyber-security, and offer a broad overview of all of the proposed reliability standards.