On July 2, 2018, FERC denied ISO New England Inc.’s (“ISO-NE”) request for waiver of its Transmission, Markets, and Services Tariff (“Tariff”) and instituted a Federal Power Act (“FPA”) section 206 proceeding because, according to FERC, the Tariff may be unjust and unreasonable.  Specifically, ISO-NE requested waiver of certain provisions in its Tariff in order to delay the retirement of two generating units owned by Exelon Generation Company, LLC (“Exelon”) for fuel security purposes.  FERC denied the waiver request and preliminarily found that the Tariff did not sufficiently address specific regional fuel security concerns.  Continue Reading FERC Finds ISO-NE’s Tariff May Not Adequately Address Fuel Security Concerns

On June 15, 2018, in separate opinions, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) affirmed two FERC rulings that denied utilities’ requests to be made whole for purchasing natural gas at inflated prices to comply with their PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”) capacity resource obligations during the 2014 Polar Vortex.  Specifically, the D.C. Circuit upheld FERC’s holdings that (1) permitting the utility in one case to recover costs retroactively would violate the filed rate doctrine and the rule prohibiting retroactive ratemaking and (2) the utility in the second case was not entitled to indemnification for its losses resulting from PJM requesting the utility to comply with its capacity resource obligations. Continue Reading D.C. Circuit Affirms Denial of Recovery of Gas Purchase Costs During 2014 Polar Vortex

On June 21, 2018, FERC found that the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.’s (“MISO”) Open Access Transmission Tariff (“Tariff”) provisions governing the termination of generator interconnection agreements (“GIAs”) were unjust and unreasonable due to an inconsistency between the terms of the GIA contained in the Tariff and the MISO Generator Interconnection Procedures (“GIP”).  FERC also accepted, after a paper hearing, MISO’s proposed revisions to the GIA and GIP termination provisions, subject to further revisions.  MISO’s Tariff revisions clarified that an interconnection customer could extend its commercial operating date (“COD”) for up to three years without risking termination from MISO, which FERC found, subject to modification, just and reasonable.  Continue Reading FERC Conditionally Approves MISO Tariff Revisions Regarding Termination of GIAs

On June 8, 2018, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) upheld FERC’s re-examination of an order regarding the effective rate for network upgrades in an Interconnection Agreement (“IA”) with the PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”).  A power developer, West Deptford Energy, LLC (“West Deptford”), requested interconnection with PJM.  After the negotiations for the IA commenced, PJM’s effective rate changed, triggering a dispute between the parties as to the appropriate effective rate for the IA: the rate in effect at the start of negotiations or the rate in effect at the time the IA was completed. The D.C. Circuit agreed with FERC’s finding that the governing rate is the rate in effect at the time the IA was completed. Continue Reading D.C. Circuit Upholds FERC’s Decision Regarding the Timing of the Application of an Effective Rate

On June 5, 2018, FERC granted the PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”) independent market monitor’s (“IMM”) request to compel the American Electric Power Services Corporation (“AEP”) to provide certain information related to cost-based offers to the IMM.  The IMM stated in its petition that it needed the information to determine whether AEP’s total costs of variable operations and maintenance (“VOM”) included in its capacity offer raise any market power concerns in the PJM Energy Market.  FERC determined that because the IMM had broad authority under PJM’s Open Access Transmission Tariff (“Tariff”) to request such information, it would grant the IMM’s petition. Continue Reading FERC Approves PJM IMM’s Request for Access to AEP Cost Data for Market Power Analysis

On May 22, 2018, GlidePath Power Solutions LLC (“GlidePath”) filed a complaint with FERC under sections 206 and 306 of the Federal Power Act alleging that PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”) improperly rejected GlidePath’s interconnection request for a proposed battery storage facility (the “Project”).  GlidePath alleged that PJM relied on an impermissible interpretation of its generator interconnection rules, which require demonstration of site control, to unjustly deny interconnection service for the Project, resulting in cancellation of the Project’s interconnection request.  In its complaint, GlidePath requested that FERC find that PJM unjustly, unreasonably, and incorrectly applied its rules regarding site control, and that PJM must restore the queue position held by the Project.  Continue Reading Complaint Asserts PJM Impermissibly Revised Generation Site Control Requirements

On April 19, 2018, FERC issued a final rule (“Order No. 845”) revising its pro forma Large Generator Interconnection Procedures (“LGIP”) and the pro forma Large Generator Interconnection Agreement (“LGIA”) to address reforms of generator interconnection procedures and agreements for generators of more than 20 megawatts.  FERC adopted a majority of the reforms proposed in FERC’s December 15, 2016 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NOPR”). Continue Reading FERC Finalizes Generator Interconnection Procedures and Agreements Reforms

On April 10, 2018, FERC approved the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.’s (“MISO”) proposed revisions to Attachment X of its Open Access Transmission, Energy and Operating Reserve Markets Tariff (“Tariff”).  Specifically, MISO proposed to require interconnection customers seeking to modify their elected level of Network Resource Interconnection Service (“NRIS”), to do so earlier on in the generator interconnection process. Continue Reading FERC Approves MISO Interconnection Revisions Regarding Modifications to NRIS Designations

On April 2, 2018, FERC denied a complaint alleging that the interconnection process under Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.’s (“MISO”) tariff was unjust and unreasonable because certain wind generators were experiencing delays in the process, such that those customers would not receive a Generator Interconnection Agreement (“GIA”) in time to receive Federal Production Tax Credit (“PTC”) benefits.  In doing so, FERC found that there was no evidence that MISO was not making reasonable efforts to meet interconnection deadlines, as required by its tariff.  FERC added that prior precedent does not require MISO to ensure wind generators receive their GIA in time to receive full PTC benefits. Continue Reading FERC Holds that MISO Interconnection Process Need Not Ensure that Interconnection Customers Receive PTC Benefits

On March 23, 2018, FERC accepted ISO New England Inc.’s (“ISO-NE”) filing to terminate a portion of the Capacity Supply Obligation (“CSO”) for a wind-powered electric generation facility (the “Disputed Portion”) owned by Blue Sky West, LLC (“Blue Sky West”).  Despite protests from Blue Sky West, FERC approved the requested termination, effective March 1, 2018. Continue Reading FERC Accepts ISO-NE Termination of Portion of Capacity Supply Obligation for Wind Generator; Clarifies Timing of ISO-NE Termination Provisions