California: Mandating Demand Response

California’s load-management experience argues for formal DR standards

California hopes to reap $3 billion in benefits from demand response over the next 20 years. Maximizing the potential may require the California Energy Commission to exert its statutory authority. CEC’s chair co-authors.

Vintage, Voltage or Votes

AEP rekindles debate over grid pricing, but should the outcome hinge on majority rule?

You might have thought the Feds closed the book on any broad, region-wide sharing of sunk transmission costs—especially after FERC ruled last spring in Opinion No. 494 that PJM could stick with license-plate pricing (LPP) for transmission lines already planned and built. If you thought that, you weren’t alone. Of 25 transmission owners (TOs) in the Midwest ISO (MISO), 24 voted recently to do the same for their market as well.

Regulators Forum: Restructuring Rollback

State-policy turmoil reshapes utility markets.

As many states move toward re-regulation, we speak to commissioners in Illinois, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia to learn how policies are evolving—and how far the regulatory shakeup will go

RECs Get Real

Green credits are maturing to become real, tradeable assets.

By displacing electricity produced from fossil fuels, renewable power plants produce two distinct products—commodity electricity and a set of environmental attributes (particularly avoided emissions). These environmental attributes can be packaged into a product called a renewable energy certificate, or REC, and sold separately from the electricity. As REC markets develop, key issues are being addressed regarding market interaction.

Tilting to Windward

As if carbon control were a fait accompli, gen developers skew the queue toward renewable projects, driving new policy on transmission pricing.

Now at last, in a region other than California, we can see clearly that renewable mandates and fears of carbon taxes have influenced the power-plant development cycle. Moreover, this effect is helping to drive policy proposals for the pricing of transmission service and the recovery of costs for grid upgrades deemed necessary to bring the new plants on line.

Asian Electric Competition Custom Tailored For Success

Taking the anti-FERC approach to the grid.

A common response to energy-market risk is a complex market infrastructure, with significant administrative effort and cost dedicated to managing the risks and ensuring that the market functions in a transparent and effective manner. But is market complexity a necessary byproduct of competitive markets?

Keep Your Eye on the South

The Southeast again is the battleground for fuels, technology, and market structure.

One sure sign of recovery in boom-and-bust power-generation markets is the renewed growth in the planning and construction of power plants. Active efforts are underway in generation development in the Southeast markets in spite of the high levels of generating reserve margins. With its traditional utility-dominated market structure and a preference for baseload generation, the Southeast is the battleground for the next round of power-generation development.

Viewpoint: In Defense of Markets

The latest resistance to deregulation is built on a foundation of lies.

A motley assortment of naysayers and recalcitrants continue to oppose competitive electricity markets around the world. But the alternative to markets is centralized command economics—a discredited concept that deserves to be consigned to the dustbin of history.

Pulling An Inside Job

PJM loses luster in a squabble over market monitoring.

The bottom fell out in the hearing room at FERC on April 5 when witness Joseph Bowring let it slip that, yes, he might well prefer more independence from his employer in his role as chief of the market monitoring unit at the PJM Interconnection.