FERC's AEP ruling begs the question: Can the feds bypass states that block transmission reform?
In its search for the perfect power market, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) at last has joined the battle that lately has brought state and federal regulators nearly to blows. A recent ruling puts the question squarely on the table:
After 10 years of waiting, some experts say a Republican-controlled Congress and a patriotic mood will make the difference in passing energy legislation this year.
Could this be the year that Congress passes a comprehensive national energy bill? That's the question on the mind of the utilities industry. Some say with Republicans controlling both the U.S. House and Senate-not to mention the presidency-the prospects for comprehensive energy legislation are bright. But some pundits are not so sure.
Asset optimization is a favored utility strategy in an economic downturn.
Generation plant construction has gone down with the economy. "Our project finance pipeline is as dry as I have seen it," says energy analyst Jerry Pfeffer of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, speaking at a recent energy conference in New Orleans. He predicts it will take at least a year or two until new construction starts up again in any significant manner.
How Competitive Metering Has Failed
Having now passed a rule that takes very few chances, the FERC must decide what's in store for investors.
Whatever happened to the Sunshine Act - the law that tells government officials to hold their meetings in the open?
That's what all of us in the trade press wanted to know on Dec. 15, when Chairman James Hoecker kept us waiting all morning and well into the afternoon, while he and his cohorts at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission debated in secret on the ninth floor over the future of the electric utility industry.
New Mexico's PUC goes down in flames.
This story has everything: politics, favoritism, a stock price crash, extortion (a long-ago crime by a certifiable nut), a utility rate case (I love'em), Ivy League economists (like moths to a flame), and finally, a last minute stay of execution, perhaps saving the utility from default on its revolving line of credit. Heck, even Enron's involved.
What's missing, however, is a clear understanding of who the good guys are.
A tale of three deals - ADT, Westinghouse, KCPL - at Western Resources.
Sensing changes in the utility industry, Western Resources Inc. in 1994 began to examine what it was and what it needed to be - to customers, to investors and to other constituencies. Through an extended exercise in strategic planning, we produced a rather typical end product: a document outlining a hypothetical future of growth, financial strength and customer satisfaction.