Washington Energy Report > Troutman Sanders LLP

FERC Commissioners Testify on Proposed EPA Carbon Emission Rule on Tuesday, July 29

Today, FERC Commissioners and Norman Bay, who has been confirmed by the Senate to serve as a FERC Commissioner, will testify before the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power regarding the potential impact of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) proposed rulemaking establishing carbon emissions guidelines for stationary generation sources.  EPA’s proposed rule is specifically designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired electric generating units. [Read more →]

July 29, 2014   Comments Off

D.C. Circuit Upholds FERC Ruling on Transmission Expansion Cost Allocation for FirstEnergy after RTO Membership Change

On July 18, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) issued a decision denying petitions for review of FERC’s orders related to Regional Transmission Organization (“RTO”) transmission expansion cost allocation for FirstEnergy Service Company (“FirstEnergy”) after it transitioned between two RTOs.  Specifically, the D.C. Circuit affirmed FERC’s rejection of FirstEnergy’s request for relief from the PJM Interconnection L.L.C.’s (“PJM”) annual allocation of transmission expansion plan costs for any project approved before FirstEnergy transitioned to that RTO.  [Read more →]

July 29, 2014   Comments Off

U.S. Senator Asks DOE’s Inspector General to Review FERC’s Enforcement Office Practices Regarding Investigations

On July 18, 2014, United States Senator Robert Casey (D-PA) sent a letter to the Department of Energy’s Inspector General requesting a review of FERC’s Office of Enforcement’s practices with regard to investigations of alleged manipulation in energy markets.  Senator Casey requested that such a review take place in order to ensure that FERC’s Office of Enforcement was fairly conducting its investigations and that all enforcement actions were transparent. [Read more →]

July 29, 2014   Comments Off

U.S. Senate Confirms LaFleur and Bay

On July 15, 2014, the U.S. Senate approved President Obama’s nominations of Norman Bay and Cheryl LaFleur to the Commission.  [Read more →]

July 21, 2014   Comments Off

FERC Staff Releases Guidance on Formula Rate Updates

On July 17, 2014, FERC released informal staff guidance on preparing annual formula rate updates.  The guidance follows several recently released orders that required certain public utilities to submit formula rate protocols or revise their current protocols. [Read more →]

July 21, 2014   Comments Off

FERC Proposes to Approve a Physical Reliability Standard

On July 17, 2014, FERC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (“NOPR”) proposing to approve the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (“NERC”) Reliability Standard CIP-014-1.  The goal of the Reliability Standard is to enhance physical security measures for the most critical Bulk-Power System facilities and thereby lessen the overall vulnerability of the Bulk-Power System facilities against physical attacks.  FERC also proposed to direct NERC to develop two modifications to the standard. [Read more →]

July 21, 2014   Comments Off

D.C. Circuit Upholds FERC Rulings in ISO-NE’s Forward Capacity Market

On July 8, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) issued an order denying petitions for review of FERC’s January 19, 2012 order requiring certain market mitigation measures in ISO New England Inc.’s (“ISO-NE”) Forward Capacity Market (“FCM”).  The D.C. Circuit instead deferred to FERC’s reasoning, holding that FERC based its buyer-side and supplier-side mitigation measures on substantial evidence and undertook its balancing responsibilities with appropriate consideration.  Notably, the D.C. Circuit upheld FERC’s prior decision that the FCM must have an offer-floor mechanism to keep “out of market” capacity from bidding as a price-taker and depressing market-clearing prices. [Read more →]

July 11, 2014   Comments Off

FERC Requests En Banc Rehearing of Demand Response Ruling

On July 7, 2014, FERC petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) for an en banc rehearing of the D.C. Circuit’s opinion that vacated FERC’s Order No. 745, which required organized wholesale energy markets to compensate demand response resources at the market price for energy (see June 13, 2014 edition of the WER). [Read more →]

July 11, 2014   Comments Off

FERC, NERC and Arizona Public Service Company Settle 2011 Southwest Blackout Claims

On July 7, 2014, FERC approved a Stipulation and Consent Agreement between its Office of Enforcement (“Enforcement”), the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (“NERC”), and Arizona Public Service Company (“APS”) relating to the September 2011 Southwest power outage that affected approximately 2.7 million customers in Southern California, Arizona and Northern Baja Mexico.  [Read more →]

July 10, 2014   Comments Off

Supreme Court Partially Affirms, Partially Reverses, EPA in Greenhouse Gas Case

On June 23, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) “Tailoring Rule,” but affirmed EPA’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions under the Clean Air Act (“CAA”) Prevention of Significant Deterioration (“PSD”) permit program.  Writing for a five-member majority, Justice Antonin Scalia notably ruled that EPA could not “tailor” the PSD statutory permitting thresholds to exclude small GHG emitters from PSD program requirements. [Read more →]

June 30, 2014   Comments Off