Clean Power Plan a “Hot Topic” at Regulatory Conference

The Clean Power Plan (CPP) and its many implications sparked a lot of great dialogue at the Center for Public Utilities’ “Current Issues 2015” regulatory conference held last week in Santa Fe, N.M. Among the audience of state public utility commissioners and utility executives in charge of regulatory strategy, the proposed CPP and anticipation of the final rulemaking this summer was a...

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Anticipating Lots of DERs Discussions At Next Week’s Regulatory Conference

Next Monday kicks off the annual Center for Public Utilities’ “Current Issues” conference in Santa Fe, N.M. The conference is an opportunity for those energy and utilities professionals who are engaged in regulatory policies to engage through a series of panel discussions and interactions with industry leaders and Commissioners. I will be in attendance once again and particularly interested to...

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Regulatory Update: What’s Going on in Your State

The comment period for the proposed Clean Power Plan ended on December 1st, and EPA is beginning to review the feedback from impacted states, utilities, and other entities.  Following is a synopsis of some recent developments: Peabody Energy’s opposition to the CPP was validated recently by comments from Laurence Tribe — President Obama’s constitutional law professor at Harvard Law...

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Is the Environmental Protection Agency Changing its Mind on the Clean Power Plan?

Facing what has been fairly consistent resistance to the draft Clean Power Plan (CPP), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued statements that could be interpreted as a partial retreat on some of the CPP’s objectives, or at least a willingness to make changes to the draft rule. In late October, the EPA announced that it would welcome additional comments, after an already-lengthy...

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Does the CPP Go Far Enough? RGGI Seems to Say “No”

The Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), the nation’s first market-based emissions trading program to reduce greenhouse gas pollution, submitted joint comments on November 5, 2014 to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) supporting the proposed Clean Power Plan (CPP). This position in and of itself is noteworthy...

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Universal Resistance May Have the EPA Rethinking the CPP

Facing what has been fairly consistent resistance to the draft Clean Power Plan (CPP), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued statements that could be interpreted as a partial retreat on some of the CPP’s objectives, or at least a willingness to make changes to the draft rule. In late October, the EPA announced that it would welcome additional comments, after an already-lengthy...

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Regulatory Issues the Focus at Center for Public Utilities Conference

For the last two days I have been attending a conference in Santa Fe, N.M., sponsored by the New Mexico State University Center for Public Utilities. It is an annual conference focused on current regulatory and legislative policy issues that are impacting the electric utility industry. There has a been a lot of discussion on infrastructure investments by utilities and how they are being...

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A Number of Factors Must Be Considered in the Commercial Wireless Debate

A number of interesting policy discussions were highlighted at the summer session of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissions (NARUC), which recently ended. A couple discussions that flew under the radar but are worth noting pertain to recommendations made for smart grid communications platforms. One of the take-aways was that electric utilities were encouraged to consider...

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State/Federal Jurisdiction Over Cyber Security Remains Key Legislative Issue

There has been a flurry of activity in Congress on the issue of cyber security in recent weeks. Some bills have failed, some executive motions have arisen in their wake, and what remains as the dust settles is the fundamental question of how jurisdiction on cyber security policy and oversight should be defined between states and the federal government.…

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Maine Ruling on Opt Out Puts the Focus on Health Issues Again

The policy developments on the AMI Opt Out front continue to heat up, and what is particularly interesting is the sharp contrast among how various state regulatory and legislative bodies are interpreting and / or ruling on the health issue of smart meters. The big event in the last week was the finding by Maine Supreme Court, which ruled that the Maine Public Utilities Commission did not...

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“Courting Customers” is Key in AMI Deployments

I served as legislative & regulatory policy manager at Sempra Energy, parent company of San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) in the mid-2000’s and had a hand in drafting the utility’s AMI business case that was approved by the CPUC in 2007. Thus, I am particularly pleased to see the recognition that SDG&E is now getting for becoming, once it installs the last of its...

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