Have gas prices fallen victim to speculation?
On Thursday, Dec. 8, as natural gas hit $40 at the citygate for Southern California (prices hit $60 that Friday), I found myself in Colonial Williamsburg, a guest of Michigan State University's Institute of Public Utilities, at the group's annual conference, watching a panel of industry experts try in vain to explain what was happening.
e-Commerce is consolidating, but there's room for the little guys too.
Thomas Edison built the electric utility industry virtually from scratch out of his workshop, so can Internet mavericks do the same for e-commerce? Or has the moment passed for the garage startups, leaving it to the big utilitiesor better yet, the large conglomerates and multi-company joint venturesto attract capital and introduce the new ideas?
The Federal Trade Commission likely will regulate those business-to-business Web portals, but how much?
Electric utility executives may be a step behind the Internet revolution, but in one key respect they may have an advantage over anyone else building an e-commerce Web portal for business-to-business (B2B) procurement.
Utility executives don't fear government regulation. They're already caught in the net.
Some fear NOx controls will spawn outages and higher power prices.
Utility executives say the EPA's plan to reduce ground-level ozone in the nation's eastern half by controlling emissions of nitrogen oxides in upwind states could undermine electric reliability and force power prices higher.