Washington Energy Report > Troutman Sanders LLP

FERC Denies PSEG Complaint, Upholds PJM’s Solicitation Process for the “Artificial Island”

On June 16, 2015, the Commission denied a complaint filed by Public Service Electric and Gas Company (“PSEG”) against PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”) in which PSEG contended that PJM did not comply with certain rules of its Open Access Transmission Tariff (“OATT”) in conducting a competitive solicitation for transmission solutions to the “Artificial Island”— a term that refers to the transmission and generation infrastructure associated with a nuclear complex that includes the Salem 1, Salem 2, and Hope Creek nuclear generating units.  In denying PSEG’s complaint, the Commission found that: (i) PJM was not required to follow its Order No. 1000 procedures in its Artificial Island solicitation; and (ii) PJM complied with its pre-Order No. 1000 OATT rules in conducting the solicitation. [Read more →]

June 29, 2015   Comments Off

FERC Institutes Section 206 Proceeding to Examine MISO Charges for Interconnection-Related Transmission Upgrades

On June 18, 2015, FERC issued an order granting in part and denying in part a complaint, and instituting a 206 proceeding to examine the justness and reasonableness of MISO’s Facilities Construction Agreement (“FCA”), Generator Interconnection Agreement (“GIA”), and Multi-Party Facilities Construction Agreement (“MPFCA”).  FERC determined that MISO’s pro forma FCA and GIA may be unjust, unreasonable, or unduly discriminatory or preferential because they treat customers of an affected system operator and those of a directly-connected transmission owner differently without providing any increased level of service.  The case deals with the means by which transmission owners are compensated for network upgrades associated with generator interconnection requests.  [Read more →]

June 29, 2015   Comments Off

FERC Staff Provides Update on Implementation of Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act

On June 18, 2015, FERC staff (“Staff”) provided an update on its implementation of the Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act of 2013 (the “Act”).  Staff stated that since the Act was signed into law, FERC has approved 43 qualifying conduit facilities – small hydropower projects that are exempt from FERC licensing requirements – out of 58 proposed facilities, while also granting 15 out of 30 requested permit extensions.  During FERC’s open meeting Commissioner Philip Moeller stated that he requested the update to bring more attention to the “enormous potential of small hydropower projects throughout the country.” [Read more →]

June 29, 2015   Comments Off

D.C. Circuit Denies Review of Pipeline Transportation Rates

On June 16, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) denied a consolidated Petition for Review of several of Kern River Gas Transmission Company’s (“Kern River”) FERC-approved transportation rates.  In doing so, the D.C. Circuit held that FERC acted reasonably in setting the rates, responded meaningfully to rate objections, and articulated a rational explanation of its decisions. [Read more →]

June 25, 2015   Comments Off

FERC Issues Two Reliability-related NOPRs, Proposes to Replace Certain Currently-effective NERC Reliability Standards

On June 18, 2015, the Commission issued two separate Notice of Proposed Rulemakings (“NOPRs”) in which it proposed to approve several mandatory Reliability Standards submitted by the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (“NERC”).  The proposed Reliability Standards broadly address the areas of Transmission Operations (“TOP”), Interconnection Reliability Operations and Coordination (“IRO”), Emergency Preparedness (“EOP”), and Undervoltage Load Shedding (“UVLS”).  If approved, the proposed Reliability Standards would replace several currently-effective NERC Reliability Standards. [Read more →]

June 25, 2015   Comments Off

FERC Adopts Revisions to Exhibit Submission Requirements for Trial-Type Evidentiary Hearings

At its June 18, 2015 monthly Commission meeting, FERC issued a final rule adopting revisions to Rule 508 of its Rules of Practice and Procedure which eliminate the requirement that participants in FERC trial-type evidentiary hearings provide paper copies of all exhibits introduced as evidence.  According to FERC, the final rule facilitates a shift toward electronic hearing procedures, while still retaining the option to provide exhibits in paper form. [Read more →]

June 19, 2015   Comments Off

FERC Denies Duke Energy’s Complaint against PJM, Initiates Investigation

On June 9, 2015, the Commission denied Duke Energy Corporation’s (“Duke”) complaint against PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”) in which Duke alleged that PJM failed to reimburse Duke for fuel PJM directed Duke to purchase so that certain gas-fired generating units would be available to run during the January 2014 polar vortex.  Although it dismissed Duke’s complaint, the Commission also initiated an investigation to examine whether certain provisions of PJM’s Open Access Transmission Tariff (“OATT”) are unjust, unreasonable, unduly discriminatory, or preferential because they: (i) do not allow market participants to submit day-ahead offers that vary by hour; and (ii) do not allow market participants to update their offers in real time, including during emergency situations. [Read more →]

June 17, 2015   Comments Off

FERC Conditionally Approves PJM’s Capacity Market Reforms; Chairman Bay Dissents

On June 9, 2015, FERC conditionally approved significant reforms to PJM Interconnection LLC’s (“PJM”) capacity market framework.  In doing so, FERC stated that PJM had demonstrated that the reforms were needed in order to ensure the long-term reliability of the electric supply within the PJM region.  Meanwhile, Chairman Norman Bay dissented, stating that PJM’s proposal was seriously flawed, and may “result in billions in additional costs for consumers without achieving its intended aim.” [Read more →]

June 17, 2015   Comments Off

D.C. Circuit Rejects Challenges to EPA’s Proposed Greenhouse Gas Rule

On June 9, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) dismissed challenges to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) proposed rule reducing carbon dioxide emission limits from existing power plants (“Proposed GHG Rule”).  In doing so, the D.C. Circuit held that it did not have the authority to review the Proposed GHG Rule because it was still being drafted and, therefore, no final agency action subject to judicial review existed. [Read more →]

June 17, 2015   Comments Off

D.C. Circuit Denies Review of EPA’s Designations of Ozone Attainment Rule

On June 2, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) denied nineteen consolidated petitions for review of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) compliance determinations with EPA’s 2008 ground-level ozone standards, known as the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (“NAAQS”).  By denying review, the D.C. Circuit affirmed EPA’s authority to make such compliance determinations under the Clean Air Act, and upheld EPA’s interpretation of the Clean Air Act and EPA’s corresponding obligations as applied to the NAAQS. [Read more →]

June 8, 2015   Comments Off