Retail Markets

'Markets' Test

We Called Them 'Markets.' Now We're Testing Them.

We're enamored of free markets, particularly in the nineties. But power markets cannot come close to emulating authentic competition. Why? They cannot satisfy the basic conditions of competition taught in microeconomics 101.

Texas Solar Two Step

Different Outcomes in State’s Two Distinct Markets

Texas highlights the importance of market structures and economics in the growth of solar deployment. Driven by customer interest and policy objectives, distributed and utility-scale solar has thrived in municipal and cooperative service territories. The same has not been true in the competitive wholesale market with retail choice.

Electricity Market Reform in Japan

Bumpy Road Ahead

This is the first in a series of three articles related to power market reform in Japan and its implications both for Japan and globally.

Tale of Two Grids

What a review of PUC cases tells us about the future of consumer technology and grid modernization.

There may be a more fundamental schism that raises fundamental questions about the role of the distribution utility and footprint of the natural monopoly.

Aggregation 2.0: Evolution of Customer Engagement with Retail Choice?

An innovative approach to targeted retail aggregation.

No state has had the same initial success with municipal aggregation as Illinois, where more than 650 local governments enrolled 70 percent of residential consumers into municipal aggregation contracts. The pathway forward in Illinois provides a model to help get programs off the ground in all retail choice states.

FERC Chasing the Uncatchable

Trying to fix mandatory capacity markets like trying to win whack-a-mole, Part I

FERC’s efforts to get capacity markets “right” have led to endless – and futile – tinkering. The cure proposed – making capacity auction markets mandatory – has unfortunately proved far worse than the disease.

Enron's Lessons

Are regulators managing market manipulation?

Some will stray from ethical behavior. But markets must be regulated to maintain confidence.

PJM's Three-Way Proposal

A re-defined capacity product, revised parameters for generator performance, and a new role for demand response.

The proposal creates a new capacity product called the “Capacity Performance Resource.”

Playing Safe with Capacity Markets

PJM would minimize risk, but so did regulation.

Changes envisioned by PJM call for ever more structured markets, further reducing the scope of the competitive landscape from which RTOs arose. They may produce a system that is actually more costly and less innovative than regulation.