Steven Andersen is Fortnightly’s contributing editor based in New York. He wrote about Michigan’s market changes in “Changing the Game,” February 2010.
Michigan is a curious case study for market deregulation, a complicated tangle of caveats and countermeasures. The state unbundled T&D, but left generation tied to retail operations. A 2008 law allowed alternative energy suppliers into the retail market, but capped their participation at 10 percent of the market (see “Changing the Game,” February 2010).
The cap was reached more than a year ago, and has only intensified the debate over retail competition in Michigan. On one side of the argument are the state’s principal IOUs, Detroit Edison and Consumers Energy, who lobbied hard for the cap. On the other, competitive retailers and large utility customers say the cap has only whetted the state’s appetite for competition.
Fortnightly spoke recently with former FERC Commissioner Bill Massey, who is now a partner at the law firm Covington & Burling. Massey is counsel to the COMPETE Coalition, an association of more than 500 companies, predominately large utility customers, and is a staunch advocate of retail market competition.
Fortnightly: Describe the COMPETE Coalition and its position on the Michigan market.