Fortnightly Magazine - March 15 2002

People (March 15, 2002)

E2I appointed Richard H. Counihan as vice president of research programs. The MAPP management committee elected its executive committee members. The Energy Distribution Group of NiSource Inc., recently announced a management realignment. And others ...

Let's Be Rational About Hydrogen as a Vehicular Fuel

A response to “Forgetting Someone, Mr. Secretary?” Frontlines, Feb 1, 2002.

Mr. Stavros seems to fall into the same trap as so many of the major car manufacturers in assuming the need for a prohibitively costly infrastructure to supply this hydrogen when one already exists that offers by far the cheapest and environmentally vastly superior option—the natural gas transmission and distribution system.

Enron C&I Customers Paying Twice

Public Utilities Fortnightly and POWERdat®

Some large commercial and industrial customers who had signed energy contracts with the now-bankrupt Enron are forced to pay their utility bills a second time. "We're looking at these bills and saying, 'Hold on a minute,'" said one corporate energy manager.

FERC At 25

A leaner bureaucracy sharpens its market-monitoring tools.

FERC turns 25 this year. With Enron’s collapse and California’s unraveled electric restructuring scheme, the silver anniversary reminiscing may be slightly muted.

Wag the Dog

Pack journalists feed off PG&E letter.

Was Pacific Gas and Electric’s recent customer mailing of a dog-bite letter and meter-reading schedule a selfless attempt to protect its employees from vicious canines? Or was the notice to dog owners a catty move to get the California press off the scent of Pacific Gas and Electric’s bankruptcy proceedings?

The Commission: The Market's Eye-in-the-Sky?

FERC's plan to expand into energy market-monitoring faces many challenges.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is positioning itself to be the preeminent energy market cop. The commission will have many challenges before it becomes successful in policing market abusers.

So, You Want to be a Retail Energy Marketer?

Retail energy markets entail a unique set of risk management challenges.

As the march of retail competition, although slower, continues to move on the country, energy companies are finding they must be much more agile at managing the risks. A discussion of what energy suppliers ought to know.

Politically Inelastic?

Electric pricing issues are hard to overcome.

Do politicians really mean what they say when they call for competitive markets in electricity at the wholesale and retail levels? Rivals of California Gov. Gray Davis champion competitive electric markets. But what if, after elections, California markets are then fixed (with unanimous consent), and prices continue to be high? Will that politician still stand behind competitive markets?

Breakdown of Tariff Risk

Explaining timing risks and magnitude risks.

Tariff risk is that risk which the marketer incurs downstream of the uplift. This risk can be broken into Timing Risk (I - III) and Magnitude Risk (IV-VI) as illustrated below.