RTO Markets at Crossroads, as Hobbled FERC Ponders Options

RTO Markets at Crossroads, as Hobbled FERC Ponders Options

May 12, 2017

by Margarita Fournier, Copyright 2016 by Competitive Assets, LLC.  All rights reserved

On 5/8/17, RTO Insider reported that at least “50 stakeholders from PJMNYISO, and ISO-NE made their cases to FERC last week on how to resolve the increasing conflicts between state energy policies and wholesale markets.” At a similar meeting in 2013, participants “differed on the health of the markets and whether major changes were needed,” but last week, “virtually everyone was calling for change — the disagreements being over how much, how fast, what kind, and whether it should be directed by FERC or come from stakeholders.” “’The challenge before the commission, the states, and all other stakeholders is no less than the question of whether the power industry will continue to use competitive markets as the basis for investment decision-making,’ Peter Fuller, vice president of market and regulatory affairs for NRG Energy, said in his written testimony.” While the conference was scheduled to air concerns about capacity markets, when both renewables and nuclear power get state support, the fact is that all energy markets in the US are facing challenges: California is dealing with below-zero prices and in ERCOT, NRG and Calpine have proposed market fixes to avoid ‘subversion’ of the market model.

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