Case No. 99-1212- EL-ETP, Sept. 13, 2000 (Ohio P.U.C.)
Restructuring Plans. The Ohio PUC denied rehearing of its restructuring order for FirstEnergy issued two months earlier, rejecting arguments by all petitioners-utility, marketers, and consumer watchdog groups.
J. Michel Marcoux
How the FERC risks a free-for-all in cases for gas facility authorization.
By final rule, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has adopted a new optional process for applicants seeking a pipeline certificate or gas import/export authority under the Natural Gas Act to construct, operate or abandon a jurisdictional facility.[Fn.1] It's known as the Pre-Filing Collaborative Process, or PFCP, but it means trouble.
In seeking to speed up administrative review, the FERC has only invited delay.
The Natural Gas Supply Association promoted John H. Sharp and Philip M. Budzik. Sharp, the association's chief lobbyist and counsel since 1988, became vice president, federal and state government affairs, and counsel. Budzik, previously director of research and analysis, was named vice president, federal regulatory affairs and technical analysis.
Bob Wentland joined Coherence Technology Company Inc. as research geophysicist. Wentland also is the manager of product development for CoherentVision(. Wentland's career includes 16 years with Shell Oil Co.
James M. Costan
ONE OF THE thorniest issues that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has had to deal with in recent years is defining the scope of its jurisdiction over pipelines on the Outer Continental Shelf. Yet the solution is relatively simple and straightforward.
Fueled by the volatile combination of perceived statutory ambiguity and significant financial gains to pipeline owners, who can convince the Commission that their currently regulated facilities are in fact beyond its jurisdiction, the OCS controversy has raged for years.
Lori A. Burkhart, Phillip S. Cross and Beth Lewis
Power Pools & Reliability
SUMMER IN WISCONSIN. Responding to concerns about the electric shortages of the summer of 1997 and fears that they could happen again, Wisconsin PSC Commissioner Joseph P. Mettner has indicated that the state's energy supply outlook for the summer of 1998 appears much better in eastern Wisconsin than it did one year ago.
Mettner noted that Wisconsin's electric supply system is operating with expected reserve margins of 19.2 percent. But he cautioned that electric power flows do not respect borders.
FERC Commissioner Vicky A. Bailey named Robert H. Solomon as her new attorney advisor for electric matters. Solomon has been with the Office of General Counsel since joining FERC in 1988. He has held key positions such as Deputy Assistant General Counsel for Electric Rates and Corporate Regulation.
AmeriGas Propane Inc. announced the election of Richard C. Gozon as director. Gozon will replace Robert C. Forney who recently retired. Gozon is executive vice president of Weyerhaeuser Co.
Bruce W. Radford
WELCOME BACK, MY FRIENDS, TO THE SHOW that never ends."
So said two weary commission staffers, trudging out of the hearing room late Friday afternoon, Jan. 31, as the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission adjourned its technical conference on the financial outlook for natural gas pipelines.
The hearing ran way behind schedule (em further evidence that before she left last summer for the Department of Energy, former FERC Chairwoman Elizabeth Moler neglected to pass along to successor James Hoecker whatever gene she possessed that allowed her to keep meetings moving right along.
Lori A. Burkhart
USE OF U.S. ECONOMY UPHELD FOR EQUITY CALCULATIONS
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, in seven rate cases involving interstate natural gas pipelines, has upheld a new policy on the appropriate long-term growth rate to be used in computing their return on equity. Five of the pipelines contested FERC's new policy, as announced in Opinion 396-b.
The Commission defended the rate-setting method, but decided to allow the pipelines a chance to prove why the rules should not apply to them. The contesting pipelines are: Trailblazer Pipeline Co. (Docket No.
Bruce W. Radford
THE FERC TAKES SUGGESTIONS ON THE FUTURE OF THE GAS INDUSTRY.
Earlier this year, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission opened a discussion of issues facing the natural gas industry. Its aim? To set "regulatory goals and priorities" for the era following from Order 636, issued in 1992. %n1%n
To gather input, the FERC scheduled a two-day public conference. It asked for comments on a myriad of topics, ranging from cost-of-service rates to hourly gas pricing and services.
George A. Avery
Too many rules can make any plant uncompetitive.
Now, more than ever, the commission must weigh
the costs when it looks at health and safety, decommissioning and antitrust impacts. Nuclear assets seem to pop to the surface wherever one looks for causes behind the current upheaval in the U.S. electric utility industry. The nuclear experience (em with its costly prudence reviews so prevalent during the 1980s (em has helped fuel a major shift in attitude.
Senior utility managers have now come to accept fundamental changes in the electric industry.