New York Advances First Transmission Project Under Renewable Energy Permitting Law

The New York State Public Service Commission on Oct. 15 adopted criteria it will apply to determine which transmission projects should be advanced expeditiously to meet the state’s renewable energy goals. As part of the move, the commission designated the proposed Northern New York project as a high-priority initiative and referred it to the New...

Illinois Commission Examines Rate Design to Support Transportation Electrification

The Illinois Commerce Commission on Aug. 20 opened an inquiry to explore electricity rate design options to support transportation electrification infrastructure and gather information about the impact rate structures will have on other forms of electrification, service, and affordability. The inquiry supplements previous efforts by the commission to study electric vehicles. In 2018, the commission...

New York Advances Transmission Projects to Deliver Clean Energy to Downstate Market

The New York Public Service Commission on Aug. 13 announced an update on transmission initiatives underway to implement the 2020 Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth & Community Benefit Act. This legislation calls for significant investment  to meet New York’s target of sourcing 70 percent of its electricity from renewable energy by 2030. The 2019 Climate Leadership...

Trump Administration Overhauls Environmental Review Process for Infrastructure Projects

The White House Council on Environmental Quality on July 16 updated regulations implementing the National Environmental Policy Act, the first comprehensive revision since 1978. The move seeks to facilitate timely reviews under the law, which requires federal agencies to consider the environmental impacts of major actions. The rule creates a time limit of one year...

Trump Signs Executive Order to Expedite Infrastructure Investments to Recover Economy from COVID-19

U.S. President Donald Trump signed an executive order on June 4 directing federal agencies to use emergency powers to expedite infrastructure projects to facilitate recovery from the economic slowdown caused by COVID-19. The order allows agencies to consult with the White House Council on Environmental Quality to identify “alternative arrangements” for complying with the requirements...

FERC to Examine COVID-19 Impacts on Energy Industry

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on June 5 announced it will convene a technical conference next month to consider the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on various segments on the U.S. energy industry. The agency will analyse the potential longer-term impacts on regulated entities to ensure efficient functioning of energy markets, power transmission, oil...

Alaska Commission Begins Process to Regulate Electric Reliability Organization

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska on May 18 opened a proceeding to establish certification standards for regional electric reliability organizations, or EROs, and create a regulatory framework to oversee them. The move stems from legislation enacted in March that authorized the commission to certify EROs and define their duties including submission of integrated resource plans,...

New York Regulator Initiates Power Grid Study to Advance Clean Energy Goals

The New York Public Service Commission on May 14 opened a proceeding to implement the provisions of the Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth and Community Benefit Act with regard to distribution and transmission upgrades and capital expenditures needed to meet the state’s clean energy goals. The law established a new siting office to streamline permitting for...

Maine Approves Avangrid’s $950 Million Hydropower Transmission Project

The Maine Department of Environmental Protection on May 11 granted a permit allowing Central Maine Power Company to build its New England Clean Energy Connect, a transmission project designed to deliver up to 1.2 gigawatts of Canadian hydropower into the Northeast. The proposed 145-mile high-voltage power line would cross western Maine to supply Massachusetts with...

Midwest Grid Operator Prepared to Meet Summer Electricity Needs

The Midcontinent Independent System Operator Inc. anticipates summer power demand to peak at 125 gigawatts, with 152 gigawatts of available capacity to meet the need, according to an April 29 news release. The grid operator said that impacts to the outage schedule from COVID-19 have been minor and no reliability impacts are foreseen due to...

FERC Proposes Revisions to Transmission Incentive Policy with Focus on Project Benefits

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on March 20 proposed revisions to its electric transmission incentive policy to spur investment in the infrastructure needed to support the evolving generation mix, increasing number of new resources seeking transmission service, and changes in load patterns. The commission proposes a shift in its incentive analysis to grant incentives based...

New Mexico Enacts Trio of Bills Supporting Renewable Energy Expansion

Democratic Governor Michelle Grisham signed a suite of bills on March 3 including legislation that reinstates the solar tax incentive that expired in 2016, helping the state move toward its goal achieving 50 percent renewable energy 2030. A second bill provides that transmission line projects qualify for industrial revenue bonds available through cities and municipalities,...