by Scott Hempling
Non-transmission alternatives will not receive the consideration they deserve – and consumers will lose the reliability and cost-saving benefits NTAs may offer – unless FERC makes clear that transmission providers have an affirmative obligation to consider them.
I. Overview and Summary
A. Transmission policy progress: 1996-2013
ince the early 1990s, FERC has issued a series of orders seeking to reconcile two conflicting facts:
1. Transmission facilities are controlled by individual utilities with retail monopolies over state-drawn service territories.
2. To accommodate consumers’ varied power supply preferences cost-effectively while maintaining and enhancing reliability, we must integrate the planning, pricing and operating of these transmission facilities over large regions that may span several utility service territories and state boundaries.