Bruc W. Radford
THE POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS," SO THE ADS SAY.
But what about a hostile bailout? I wouldn't have believed it myself until the news arrived, forcing me to rewrite this column at press time.
Imagine: Enron offering to reimburse PECO Energy for $5.4 billion in stranded costs, while taking on the role as the electricity provider of last resort for southeast Pennsylvania.
No doubt you have already read a half-dozen news stories about Enron's play for PECO. The details should sound familiar; the Philly papers were filled with lively quotes. On Oct.
Bruce W. Radford
An interview with Ralph Masiello
and Sue Scott of ABB
The big, traditional projects in automated meter reading have really stalled, because utilities are no longer assured of a return on investment."
That warning comes from Ralph D. Masiello, vice president and general manager, ABB Power T&D Co. Inc., the leading manufacturer of electric meters in North America.
"We used to understand the economics of AMR. Just compare the cost of AMR against the cost of metering. But now the economics have changed.
Bruce W. Radford
Speaking on June 11 in Washington, D.C., at a symposium sponsored by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Rep. dan Schaefer (R-Colo.) was heard to say that he would have his electric restructuring bill out of committee by the end of July. He said his bill would mandate electric competition by 2000--just the sort of deadline that Texas Public Utility Commission Chair Robert Gee likes to call a "Hong Kong" clause.
Will the millennium bring the dawn of customer choice? Here we are, halfway through 1997. Hong Kong is now Chinese, but in America we are still ratepayers.
Steven Rosenstock, P.E., and Mark E. Krebs
If truth is the first casualty of war, as we learned from author Mark Krebs ("It's a War Out There: A Gas Man Questions Electric 'Efficiency,'" December 1996, p. 24), then certainly the truth has been mutilated beyond recognition.
His article, which suggests that electric utilities have used conservation and demand-side programs improperly (to build electric load at the expense of natural gas!) is full of inaccuracies, misleading charts and other errors.
Joseph F. Schuler, Jr.
Perhaps the only political prediction bound to come true this year is that the words ôelectric restructuringö will reverberate in nearly every stateÆs legislative chamber.
So says Matthew Brown, director of the energy project at the National Conference of State Legislatures.
But other factors support BrownÆs prediction. Public Utilities FortnightlyÆs informal survey of most states turned up similar results. Legislators know that the Clinton Administration and the U.S. Congress plan to introduce a federal bill this year.
Lori A. Burkhart
Each assumes a vertical breakup, but watch out for securitization.
It can prove difficult to detect any overt difference of opinion among financial credit rating agencies. That appears to be the case in today's electric utility industry, where Moody's, Duff & Phelps, and Standard & Poor's each predicts that a breakup of the vertically integrated utility is now virtually inevitable. The result, they say, will leave us with an industry made up of disaggregated high-risk power generators, and lower-risk companies engaged in transmission, distribution, and other related services.
J. Michael Parish, Richard S. Green and Stephen H. Kinney
Targeted Debt: Give the Stockholders What They Want
Too much leverage can be risky, but sometimes it's just what the doctor ordered.
One of the reasons that stockholders in Columbia Gas survived a Chapter XI proceeding more nearly intact than owners of other bankrupt utility enterprises was that the parent holding company was a secured creditor of its operating subsidiaries at the time of the filing.
Phillip S. Cross
As directed by the state legislature, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has issued a preliminary plan to restructure the state's electric industry.
Mark E. Krebs
How the electric industry uses DSM and IRP to build load, ignoring basic truths found in fuel-cycle analysis.It was during the early 19th century that General von Clausewitz announced his nine principles of warfare.
Lori A. Burkhart
The Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has released for comment its Draft Plan on Electric Industry Restructuring, which would allow all retail customers to choose their generation supplier beginning in January 2000. The draft permits customers to aggregate, and does not require reciprocity based on retail access in other states or Canada.
Investor-owned utilities (IOUs) would have to structurally separate generation by January 2000, and divest all generation assets by January 2006.