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Public Utilities Reports

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Michael Yuffee

Frontlines

Bruce W. Radford

Some in California say they will pay double - once to the ISO, then again to the IOU.

What if power prices fall but the savings get eaten up by higher transmission rates? Let's say we unbundle the wires, but end up creating just another layer of costs? We pay the independent system operator (ISO) to run the grid, but the investor-owned utility (IOU) still owns the wires. It has its own costs to recover. So now we pay two bills, right?

The issue is troublesome for California's electric utilities and a quagmire for Pacific Gas & Electric Co. In a new tariff it filed on Nov.