Blog

The Sustainable FERC Project is a coalition of environmental and clean energy organizations focused on developing policies for a cleaner, more efficient electric grid (more here). Our blog site is intended as a location for the productive and constructive sharing and exchange of policy ideas for use by all interested members of the coalition and others interested in our issues. Read the full blogging policy.

Electric Grid Resilience and FERC: What Happens Next?

March 7, 2018 by John Moore, Director, The Sustainable FERC Project On March 9, the nation’s regional grid operators are poised to tell their regulator—the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)—what they are doing about grid “resilience” and what, if anything, FERC should do about it. Here’s a preview of what the grid operators are likely to say, and how FERC…

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Diverse Coalition Sets Forth Vision for FERC Power Markets

March 7, 2018 by Jennifer Chen, Attorney, Sustainable FERC Project Seeking to fix growing problems with certain wholesale electricity markets, an unusual coalition of rural-cooperative and publicly-owned electric utilities, industrial and commercial customers, consumer advocates, renewable energy organizations, and NRDC have joined together in support of a set of principles for market design. Chief among the concerns spurring the collaboration are wholesale capacity markets…

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FERC Storage Rule a Win for a More Flexible Grid

February 20, 2018 by Jennifer Chen, Attorney, Sustainable FERC Project The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the agency overseeing the competitiveness of the wholesale electricity markets and high-voltage interstate transmission grid operators, has finalized a rule that reduces barriers to electric storage resources to compete in those markets. Electric storage resources, like batteries, can absorb and store cheap electricity generated by wind…

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No Love for Grid Operator’s Latest Costly Market Proposal

February 14, 2018 by Jennifer Chen, Attorney, Sustainable FERC Project PJM, the electricity grid operator serving 65 million customers in 13 Mid-Atlantic and Midwestern states and the District of Columbia, is deciding whether it will again override its own stakeholders to propose yet another controversial and expensive electricity market rule change at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the agency…

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FERC to Revisit Outdated Pipeline Review Process

January 19, 2018 by Montina Cole, Senior Attorney  The new chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) recently announced plans to review its decades-old approach for evaluating proposals for interstate gas pipelines. The announcement came just weeks after the release of a groundbreaking report commissioned by NRDC, discussed here, which found that FERC’s pipeline policy has not kept pace with changes in the energy landscape. Natural…

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FERC Rejects Perry’s Coal/Nuke Bailout, Finding It Illegal

January 9, 2018 by Miles Farmer, Clean Energy Attorney, & John Moore, Director,  Sustainable FERC Project The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has rejected U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Rick Perry’s transparent attempt to needlessly funnel billions of electricity customer dollars to the owners of old and expensive coal and nuclear plants. In a major victory for consumers, the environment, and…

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Cold Temps Prove Value of Electricity Grid Markets, Planning

January 4, 2018 by John Moore, Director, Sustainable FERC Project Much of the country is in the grip of frigid weather, which is increasing demand for electricity (but still less than during hot summer months). Predictably, coal interests contend that because coal plants are running more to help meet higher demand, it proves America needs the ill-conceived Trump-Perry bailout plan to save…

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What’s Resilience? DOE Should Say Before Spending Your Money

October 23, 2017 by Jennifer Chen, Attorney, The Sustainable FERC Project The Department of Energy (DOE) recently proposed that American consumers further subsidize certain power plants (essentially, coal and nuclear power plants) by paying them billions of dollars to stockpile 90 days worth of fuel onsite. This proposal hinges on the idea that onsite fuel will somehow provide the electric grid with “resilience.” But the DOE…

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DOE’s Coal and Nuclear Bailout Proposal Should Be Rejected

October 23, 2017 by Miles Farmer, Clean Energy Attorney  The Trump administration’s outrageous plan to prop up the sagging coal and nuclear industries would irreparably change how our electric system works, cost consumers billions of dollars annually, and dampen investment in more efficient, more flexible, and cleaner technologies, NRDC and others across the political spectrum are saying in official comments due today. Department of Energy…

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Transforming the Grid Is Essential for a Safe Climate Future

October 11, 2017 by John Moore, Director, The Sustainable FERC Project This is part of a series of blogs on NRDC’s new report, “America’s Clean Energy Frontier: The Pathway to a Safer Climate Future,” A safer climate future will require that the United States cut climate pollution by at least 80 percent by 2050. Doing so will require a modern, responsive,…

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